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"With. Illustrations bij 

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,u ° 6. 

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by the Internet Archive in 2007. 

From New York Public Library. 

May be used for non-commercial, personal, research, 

or educational purposes, or any fair use. 

May not be indexed in a commercial service. 

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Illustrated By 
Rie Cramer 



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1921 > B V 

Grimm's Fairy Tale» 

Printed in the U. S. A. 

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TO our American boys and girls is offered this volume 
which is really Grimm's Fairy Tales, not an abridg- 
ment superficial and colorless, nor an insipid retelling 
of the stories. 

This edition is based on the Hunt version, with an introduc- 
tion by the folk-lorist, Andrew Lang. The Hunt version is 
considered a most accurate English translation. 

From the full collection, fifty-one stories suitable for children 
have been selected. Among these are famous tales as well as 
many delightful ones not usually included in children's volumes. 

Where the Hunt wording is too stilted, the text of the 
Hausmarchen itself has been followed. The very long sen- 
tences have been subdivided. While that quaint old-fashioned 
translation, illustrated with woodcuts by Wehnert, has con- 
tributed its bit of folk phraseology. The Editor's desire is 
to restore to the children as large a, collection as possible 
of Grimm's Fairy Tales unmutilated in their literary perfec- 
tion. , , ; , 

The illustrations are by the well-kno^n Dutch artist, Mrs. 
Rie Cramer. Some of Rie Cramer's other fairy tale pictures 
published in England, are said by admiring critics there, to be 
very charming, of exceptional merit, and to have high artistic 
merit of their own. 

Her illustrations for Grimm are particularly harmonious in 


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color, while their quaint charm grows on one more and more as 
one lives with them. They are fanciful or humorous. They 
have the quality, rare in fairy tales, of actually illustrating their 
text. This will mean added pleasure to the children. Rie 
Cramer's little hlack and white headings are particularly pretty 
and graceful in outline. 

The tales are presented here in their original form, with noth- 
ing left out of child-heartedness, humor, poetic feeling, and 
delicate sentiment and fancy. Indeed, it is all here — the poesy 
and purity which those profound and child-loving scholars, the 
Brothers Grimm, retained in the old folk-tales which, with so 
much pains, they gathered largely from among the peasant- 
folk themselves. 

And the Brothers explained, in their preface, that they had 
planned the volume as an educational book as well as one for 
scholars; for which reason they had eliminated everything which 
they feared might harm the children. But since the Brothers 
issued their book, about a hundred years ago, educational re- 
quirements of what is ethically best for children have materially 
advanced. Therefore, in this book, a few other parts unsuit- 
able for children>haVe pfeen *pn}itt6(l;;' 

So now this volume; of .-G-rknin's Fairy Tales is offered to 
our American boys 'tfrid; "girls;; and may they have continued 
delight in the beautihrt0kl}f^R^.4tions, which have come down 
to us from the fresh and sparkling meadows and woods of 
ancient days. 

Fathers and mothers, too, will enjoy reading the tales aloud 
and sharing with the children the humor and the deep but sim- 
ple ethical truths so tenderlv and poetically set forth therein. 


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Teachers and story-tellers, also, may find in this sincere 
version, rich material for kindling the imagination and feeding 
the poetic fancy of their pupils. 

The Editor, 

Frances Jenkins Olcott. 


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The Editor's acknowledgments are due to the following 

Kinder und Hausmarchen, following the last edition author- 
ized by William Grimm with the Grimm Introduction on the 
origin and educational use of the tales. 

Household Stories, illustrated by Wehnert, first published 
in London, 1853. 

But most especially to Household Tales, with the Author's 
notes, translated by Margaret Hunt, introduction by Andrew 
Lang, Bohn Library. 

For the use of the Hunt text the Editor gratefully acknowl- 
edges the gracious permission of Messrs. Harcourt, Brace and 
Company, American Publishers of the Bohn Library. 


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The Frog- King ; or, Iron Henry 13 

The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids 19 

Rapunzel 24 

Little Brother and Little Sister 30 

The Star-Monet 39 

The Fisherman and His Wife 41 

The White Snake 53 

Haensel and Grethel 59 

The Seven Ravens 69 

Ash-Maiden 73 

The Elves and the Shoemaker 83 

The Three Brothers 86 

Little Table Set Thyself, Gold- Ass, and Cudgel Out of 

the Sack 89 

Iron John 105 

Clever Elsie 117 

The Bremen Town-Musioians 122 

The Six Swans 127 

The Poor Miller's Boy and the Cat 134 

Little Red-Cap 140 

King Thrushbeard 145 

The Gold-Children 151 

Little Snow- White 159 


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pi at 


Little Briar-Rose 176 

The Three Little Men in the Wood 181 

The Golden Bird 187 

The Queen Bee 197 

Bird-Found 200 

The Golden Goose 204 

Mother Holle 208 

The Two Travelers . . - 213 

Jorinda and Joringel 228 

How Six Men Got On in the World 232 

The Goose-Girl 240 

The Singing, Soaring Lark 249 

Doctor Knowall 257 

The Blue Light 260 

The Spindle, the Shuttle, and the Needle . . . .267 

The Three Luck-Children 272 

The Donkey Cabbages *T^ 276 

Clever Hans 285 

The Iron Stove 291 

Sweet Porridge 299 

Snow- White and Rose-Ked 301 

The Hedge-King 310 

One-Eye, Two-Eyes, and Three-Eyes 314 

The Goose- Girl at the Well 325 

The Shoes That Were Danoed to Pieces , 338 

The Nix of the Mill-Pond 344 

The Little House in the Wood 352 

Maid Maleen 360 


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He Said, " Little Table Set Thyself!" .... Frontispiece 

The Little Kids Cried, " First Show Us Your Paws" ... 20 

The King Said, " Will You Be My Dear Wife*" . 35 

"Yes," Said She, "Now I Am Emperor" 48 

There Lay the Gold Ring in the Shell ...... 57 

Each Star Sat on Its Own Little Chair 71 

The Elves Began to Stitch, Sew, and Hammer .... 84 

The King's Daughter Pulled Off His Hat, and His Golden Hair 

Rolled Down Ill 

The Princess Went Out and Gathered Star-Flowers . . .130 

"Well," She Laughed, "He Has a Chin Like a Thrush's Beak " 146 

The Maiden Said, "I Will Be True to You, Your Life Long" . 155 

"Perhaps," Said She, "Your Name is Rumpelstiltskin! " . . 174 

In the Moonlight He Saw a Bird Whose Feathers Were Shining 

with Gold 188 

A Heavy Shower of Gold-Rain Fell 210 

The Eldest Got the Merry Tailor for a Husband . . . .227 

The Head Answered, "Alas! Young Queen How 111 You Fare " 244 

The First Servant Came With a Dish of Delicate Fare . . 258 

When the Corn Was Ripe, They Shot It Down . . . .273 

Then the King's Daughter Came to a Little House and Peeped 

in Through the Window ........ 294 

"Don't Be Impatient," Said Snow- White, "I Will Help You" 306 

When the Gray Mask Fell Off, the Golden Hair Broke Forth 

Like Sunbeams 333 

The Full Moon Came : She Combed Her Long Black Hair With 

the Golden Comb 348 

The Prince Took Her by the Hand and Led Her to Church . 363 


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IN old times, when wishing was having, there lived a King 
whose daughters were all beautiful, but the youngest was 
so beautiful that the sun itself, which has seen so much, 
was astonished whenever it shone in her face. 

Close by the King's castle lay a great dark forest, and under 
an old lime-tree in the forest, was a fountain. When the day 
was very warm, the King's Child went out into the forest and 
sat down by the side of the cool fountain, and when she was 
dull she took a golden ball, and threw it up in the air and 
caught it. And this ball was her favorite plaything. 

Now, it so happened one day, the King's Daughter's golden 
ball did not fall into the little hand which she was holding up 
for it, but on to the ground, and rolled straight into the water. 
The King's Daughter followed it with her eyes; but it van- 
ished, and the well was deep, so deep that the bottom could not 


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be seen. On this she began to cry, and cried louder and louder, 
and could not be comforted. 

And as she thus lamented, some one said to her, " What ails 
you, King's Daughter? You weep so that even a stone would 
show pity." 

She looked round to the side from whence the voice came, 
and saw a Frog stretching its thick, ugly head from the water. 
" Ah! old water-splasher, is it you? " said she; " I am weeping 
for my golden ball, which has fallen into the fountain." 

" Be quiet, and do not weep," answered the Frog, " I can 
help you. But what will you give me if I bring your plaything 
up again? " 

" Whatever you will have, dear Frog," said she — " my 
clothes, my pearls and jewels, and even the golden crown which 
I am wearing." 

The Frog answered, " I do not care for your clothes, your 
pearls and jewels, or your golden crown, but if you will love 
me and let me be your companion and playfellow, and sit by 
you at your little table, and eat off your little golden plate, and 
drink out of your little cup, and sleep in your little bed — if you 
will promise me this, I will go down below, and bring your 
golden ball up again." 

11 Oh, yes," said she, u I promise you all you wish, if you will 
but bring my ball back again." She, however, thought, " How 
the silly Frog does talk! He lives in the water with the other 
frogs and croaks, and can be no companion to any human 
being! " 

But the Frog, when he had received this promise, put his 

head into the water and sank down. In a short time he came 


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swimming up again with the ball in his mouth, and threw it 
on the grass. The King's Daughter was delighted to see her 
pretty plaything once more, and picked it up, and ran away 
with it. 

" Wait, wait," said the Frog. " Take me with you. I can't 
run as you can." But what did it avail him to scream his 
croak, croak, after her, as loudly as he could? She did not 
listen to it, but ran home and soon forgot the poor Frog, who 
was forced to go back into his fountain again. 

The next day, when she had seated herself at table with the 
King and all the courtiers, and was eating from her little 
golden plate, something came creeping splish splash, splish 
splash, up the marble staircase. When it got to the top, it 
knocked at the door, and cried: 

"King's Daughter, youngest, 
Open the doorl" 

She ran to see who was outside, but when she opened the 
door, there sat the Frog in front of it. Then she slammed the 
door in great haste, sat down to dinner again, and was quite 

The King saw plainly that her heart was beating violently, 
and said, " My Child, what are you so afraid of? Is there a 
Giant outside who wants to carry you away? " 

" Ah, no," replied she, " it is no Giant, but a disgusting 

" What does the Frog want with you? " 

" Ah, dear Father, yesterday when I was in the forest sit- 
ting by the fountain, playing, my golden ball fell into the 


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water. And because I cried so, the Frog brought it out again 
for me. And because he insisted so on it, I promised him he 
should be my companion; but I never thought he would be able 
to come out of the water 1 And now he is here, and wants to 

come in." 

In the meantime, it knocked a second time, and cried; 

"King's Daughter, youngest! 
Open to me! 
Don't you remember yesterday, 
And alt that you to me did say, 
Beside the cooling fountain's spray? 
King's Daughter, youngest! 
Open to me! " 

Then said the King, " That which you have promised you 
must perform. Go and let him in." 

She went and opened the door, and the Frog hopped in and 
followed her, step by step, to her chair. There he sat still and 
cried, " Lift me up beside you." 

She delayed, until at last the King commanded her to do it. 
When the Frog was once on the chair, he wanted to be on the 
table, and when he was on the table, he said, " Now, push your 
little golden plate nearer to me that we may eat together." 

She did this, but it was easy to see that she did not do it will- 
ingly. The Frog enjoyed what he ate, but almost every 
mouthful she took, choked her. 

At length he said, " I have eaten and am satisfied. Now I 

am tired, carry me into your little room and make your little 

silken bed ready; and we will both lie down and go to sleep." 

The King's Daughter began to cry, for she was afraid of the 


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cold Frog, which she did not like to touch, and which was now 
to sleep in her pretty, clean little bed. 

But the King grew angry and said, " He who helped yon 
when you were in trouble, ought not afterward to be despised." 

So she took hold of the Frog with two fingers, carried him 
upstairs, and put him in a corner. But when she was in bed, he 
crept to her and said, " I am tired, I want to sleep as well as 
you; lift me up or I will tell your father." a 

Then she was terribly angry, and took him up and threw 
him with all her might against the wall. 

" Now, you will be quiet, odious Frog," said she. 

But when he fell down, he was no Frog but a King's Son 
with beautiful kind eyes! 

He, by her father's will, was now her dear companion and 
husband. Then he told her how he had been bewitched by a 
wicked Witch, and how no one could have delivered him from 
the fountain but herself, and that to-morrow they would go 
together into his kingdom. 

Then they went to sleep, and next morning when the sun 
awoke them, a coach came rolling up drawn by eight white 
horses, with white ostrich feathers on their heads. They were 
harnessed with golden chains, and behind stood the young 
King's servant, Faithful Henry. Faithful Henry had been 
so unhappy when his master was changed into a Frog, that he 
had three iron bands laid round his heart, lest it should burst 
with grief and sadness. 

The coach was to conduct the young King into his kingdom. 
Faithful Henry helped them both in, and placed himself be- 
hind again, and was full of jov because of this deliverance. 


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And when they had driven a part of the way, the King's Son 
heard a cracking behind him as if something had broken. So 
he turned round and cried: 

"Henry, the coach does break! n 

"No, no, my lord, you do mistake! 
It is the band around my heart, 
That felt such great and bitter smart, 
When you were in the fountain strange, 
When you into a Frog were changed! " 

Again and once again, while they were on their way, some- 
thing cracked; and each time the King's Son thought the car- 
riage was breaking. But it was only the bands which were 
springing from the heart of Faithful Henry because his master 
was set free and was happy. 


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THERE was once on a time, an old Goat who had seven 
little Kids, and loved them with all the love of a mother 
for her children. 

One day, she wanted to go into the forest and fetch some 
food. So she called all seven to her and said, " Dear Children, 
I have to go into the forest. Be on your guard against the 
Wolf. If he come in, he will devour you all — skin, hair, and 
all. The wretch often disguises himself; but you will know 
him at once by his rough voice and his black feet." 

The Kids said, " Dear Mother, we will take good care of 
ourselves. You may go away without any anxiety." 

Then the old one bleated, and went on her way with an easy 

It was not long before some one knocked at the house-door, 
and cried, " Open the door, dear Children! Your mother is 
here, and has brought something back with her for each of 

But the little Kids knew that it was the Wolf, by his rough 

voice. " We will not open the door," cried they; " you are not 


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our mother. She has a soft, pleasant voice, but your voice is 
rough. You are the Wolf! " 

Then the Wolf went away to a shopkeeper, and bought a 
great lump of chalk, ate this and made his voice soft with it. 
Then he came back, knocked at the door of the house, and cried, 
" Open the door, dear Children! Your mother is here and has 
brought something back with her for each of you." 

But the Wolf had laid his black paws against the window, 
and the children saw them, and cried, " We will not open the 
door, our mother has not black feet like you. You are the 

Then the Wolf ran to a baker, and said, " I have hurt my 
feet, rub some dough over them for me." 

And when the baker had rubbed his feet over, he ran to the 
miller and said, c< Strew some white meal over my feet for me." 
The miller thought to himself, " The Wolf wants to deceive 
some one," and refused. But the Wolf said, " If you will not 
do it, I will devour you." Then the miller was afraid, and 
made his paws white for him. Yes! so are men! 

Now, the wretch went for the third time to the house-door, 
knocked at it, and said, "Open the door for me, Children! 
Your dear little mother has come home, and has brought every 
one of you something from the forest with her." 

The little Kids cried, " First show us your paws that we 
may know if you are our dear little mother." 

Then he put his paws in through the window. And when 

the Kids saw that they were white, they believed all that he 

said, and opened the door. But who should come in but the 



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They were terrified and wanted to hide themselves. One 
sprang under the table, the second into the bed, the third into 
the stove, the fourth into the kitchen, the fifth into the cup- 
board, the sixth under the washing-bowl, and the seventh into 
the clock-case. But the Wolf found them all and made no de- 
lay, but swallowed one after the other down his throat. The 
youngest in the clock-case was the only one he did not find. 

When the Wolf had satisfied his appetite, he took himself 
off, laid himself down under a tree in the green meadow out- 
side, and began to sleep. 

Soon afterward, the old Goat came home again from the 
forest. All! what a sight she saw there! The house-door stood 
wide open. The table, chairs, and benches were thrown down, 
the washing-bowl lay broken to pieces, and the quilts and pil- 
lows were pulled off the bed. ' 

She sought her children, but they were nowhere to be found. 
She called them one after another by name, but no one an- 
swered. At last, when she called the youngest, a soft voice 
cried, " Dear Mother, I am in the clock-case." 

She took the Kid out, and it told her that the Wolf had 
come and had eaten all the others. Then you may imagine how 
she wept over her poor children! 

At length, in her grief she went out, and the youngest Kid 
an with her. When they came to the meadow, there lay the 
Wolf by the tree and he was snoring so loud that the branches 
shook. She looked at him on every side and saw that some- 
thing was moving and struggling in his stomach. " Ah! " said 
she, " is it possible that my poor children, whom he has swal- 
lowed down for his supper, can be still alive? " 


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Then the Kid had to run home and fetch scissors, and a 
needle and thread, and the Goat cut open the monster's 
stomach. Hardly had she made one cut, than a little Kid 
thrust its head out, and when she had cut farther, all six sprang 
out one after another, and were all still alive, and had suffered 
no hurt whatever, for in his greediness the monster had swal- 
lowed them whole. 

What rejoicing there was! They embraced their dear 
mother, and jumped like a tailor at his wedding. The mother, 
however, said, " Now go and look for some big stones. We 
will fill the wicked beast's stomach with them, while he is 

Then the seven Kids dragged the stones thither with all 
speed, and put as many of them into his stomach as they could 
get in. And the mother sewed him up again in the greatest 
haste; so that he was not aware of anything and never once 

When the Wolf had had his sleep out, he got on his legs, 
and as the stones in his stomach made him very thirsty, he 
wanted to go to a well to drink. But when he began to walk 
and to move about, the stones in his stomach knocked against 
each other and rattled. Then cried he: 

"What rumbles and tumbles 
Against my poor bones? 
I thought Hivas six Kids, 
But it's only big stones! " 

And when he got to the well and stooped over the water and 
was just about to drink, the heavy stones made him fall in. 

There was no help for it, but he had to drown miserably! 


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When the seven Kids saw that, they came running to the 
spot and cried aloud, "The Wolf is dead! The Wolf is 
dead!" and danced for joy round about the well with their 


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THERE was once a man and a woman, who had long in 
vain wished for a child. At length, the woman hoped 
that God was ahout to grant her desire. 

These people had a little window at the back of their house 
from which a splendid garden could be seen. It was full of 
the most beautiful flowers and herbs. It was, however, sur- 
rounded by a high wall, and no one dared to go into it because 
it belonged to a Witch, who had great power and was dreaded 
by all the world. 

One day, the woman was standing by this window and look- 
ing down into the garden, when she saw a bed which was 
planted with the most beautiful rampion (rapunzel), and it 
looked so fresh and green that she longed for it, and had the 
greatest desire to eat some. 

This desire increased every day, and as she knew that she 
could not get any of it, she quite pined away, and looked pale 
and miserable. 

Then her husband was alarmed, and asked, " What ails you> 

dear Wife? " 


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" Afi," sEe replied, " if I can't get some o? the rampion to 
eat, which is in the garden behind our house, I shall die." 

The man, who loved her, thought, " Sooner than let your 
wife die, bring her some of the rampion yourself, let it cost you 
what it will!" 

In the twilight of evening, he clambered over the wall into 
the garden of the Witch, hastily clutched a handful of ram- 
pion, and took it to his wife. She at once made herself a salad 
of it, and ate it with much relish. 

She, however, liked it so much — so very much — that the next 
day she longed for it three times as much as before. If he was 
to have any rest, her husband must once more descend into the 
garden. In the gloom of evening, therefore, he let himself 
down again. But when he had clambered clown the wall he was 
terribly afraid, for he saw the Witch standing before him. 

" How dare you," said she with angry look, " descend into 
my garden and steal my rampion like a thief? You shall suf- 
fer for it!" 

"Ah," answered He, "let mercy take the place of justice! 
I had to do it out of necessity. My wife saw your rampion 
from the window, and felt such a longing for it that she would 
have died, if she had not got some to eat." 

Then the Witch let her anger be softened, and said to him, 
" If the case be as you say, I will allow you to take away with 
you as much rampion as you will, only I make one condition, 
you must give me the child which your wife will bring into the 
world. It shall be well treated, and I will care for it like a 

The man in his terror consented to everything, and when the 


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woman at last had a little daughter, the Witch appeared at 
once, gave the child the name of Rapunzel, and took it away 
with her. 

Rapunzel grew into the most beautiful child beneath the 
sun. When she was twelve years old, the Witeh shut her into 
a tower, which lay in a forest, and had neither stairs nor door. 
But quite at the top was a little window. When the Witch 
wanted to go in, she placed herself beneath this, and cried: 

"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, 
Let down thy hair.' 9 

Rapunzel had magnificent long hair, fine as spun gold, and 
when she heard the voice of the Witch, she unfastened her 
braided tresses and wound them round one of the hooks of the 
window above. And then the hair fell twenty ells down, and 
the Witch climbed up by it. 

After a year or two, it came to pass that the King's Son 
rode through the forest and went by the tower. Then he heard 
a song, which was so charming that he stood still and listened. 
This was Rapunzel, who in her solitude passed her time in let- 
ting her sweet voice resound. 

The King's Son wanted to climb up to her, and looked for 
the door of the tower, but none was to be found. He rode 
home, but the singing had so deeply touched his heart, that 
every day he went out into the forest and listened to it. 

Once when he was thus standing behind a tree, he saw that 
a Witch came there, and he heard how she cried: 

"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, 
Let down thy hair." 

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Then Rapunzel let down the braids of her hair, and the WitcK 
climbed up to her. 

" If that is the ladder by which one mounts, I will for once 
try my fortune," said he. 

The next day when it began to grow dark, he went to the 
tower and cried: 

"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, 
Let down thy hair. 9 * 

Immediately the hair fell down, and the King's Son climbed 

At first Rapunzel was terribly frightened when a man, such 
as her eyes had never yet beheld, came to her. But the King's 
Son began to talk to her quite like a friend, and told her that 
his heart had been so stirred, that it had let him have no rest, 
so he had been forced to sec her. 

Then Rapunzel lost her fear, and when he asked her if she 
would take him for her husband, and she saw that he was young 
and handsome, she thought, " He will love me more than old 
Dame Gothel does; " and she said yes, and laid her hand in his. 

She said also, " I will willingly go away with you, but I do 
not know how to get down. Bring with you a skein of silk 
every time that you come, and I will weave a ladder with it. 
When that is ready I will descend, and you will take me on 
your horse.'* 

They agreed that until that time, he should come to her every 
evening, for the old woman came by day. The Witch re- 
marked nothing of this, until once Rapunzel said to her, " Tell 

me, Dame Gothel, how it happens that vou are so much heavier 


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for me to draw up, than the young Bang's Son — He is witti me 
in a moment." 

" Ah! you wicked Child! " cried the Witch'. " What do I 
hear you say! I thought I had separated you from all the 
world, and yet you have deceived me ! " 

In her anger she clutched Rapunzel's beautiful tresses, 
wrapped them twice round her left hand, seized a pair of 
scissors with the right, and snip, snap, they were cut off, and 
the lovely braids lay on the ground. And she was so pitiless 
that she took poor Rapunzel into a desert, where she had to 
live in great grief and misery. 

On the same day, however, that she cast out Rapunzel, the 
Witch, in the evening, fastened the braids of hair which she 
had cut off, to the hook of the window; and when the King's 
Son came and cried: 

"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, 
Let down thy hair," 

she let tfie hair down. 

The King's Son ascended. He did not find his dearest 
Rapunzel above, but the Witch, who gazed at him with wicked 
and venomous looks. 

" Aha! " she cried mockingly, " you would fetch your dear- 
est! But the beautiful bird sits no longer singing in the nest. 
The cat has got it, and will scratch out your eyes as well. 
Rapunzel is lost to you! You will never see her more! " 

The King's Son was beside himself with grief and in his 

despair he leapt down from the tower. He escaped with his 

life, but the thorns into which he fell, pierced his eyes. Then he 


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wandered quite blind about the forest, ate nothing but roots 
and berries, and did nothing but lament and weep over the loss 
of his dearest wife. 

Thus he roamed about in misery for some years, and at 
length came to the desert where Rapunzel lived in wretched- 
ness. He heard a voice, and it seemed so familiar to him that 
he went toward it. When he approached, Rapunzel knew him, 
and fell on his neck and wept. Two of her tears wetted his 
eyes and they grew clear again, and he could see with them as 

He led her to his Kingdom where he was joyfully received,, 
and they lived for a long time, happy and contented. 


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LITTLE brother took his little sister by the hand and 
said, " Since our mother died, we have had no happi- 
ness; our stepmother beats us every day, and if we 
come near her, she kicks us away with her foot. Our meals are 
the hard crusts of bread that are left over. The little dog un- 
der the table is better off, for she often throws it a nice bit. 
May Heaven pity us! If our mother only knew! Come, we 
will go forth together into the wide world. 5 ' 

They walked the whole day over meadows, fields, and stony 
places; and when it rained the little sister said, " Heaven and 
our hearts are weeping together." 

In the evening they came to a large forest, and they were so 
weary with sorrow and hunger and the long walk, that they 
lay down in a hollow tree and fell asleep. 

The next day when they awoke, the sun was already high 
and shone down hot into the tree. Then the little brother said, 
f< Little Sister, I am thirsty. If I knew of a little brook I 
would go and take a drink. I think I hear one running/' The 


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little brother got up and took the little sister by the hand, and 
they set off to find the brook. 

But the wicked stepmother was a Witch, and had seen how 
the two children had gone away. She had crept after them, as 
Witches do creep, and had bewitched all the brooks in the 

Now, when they found a little brook leaping brightly over 
the stones, the little brother was going to drink out of it, but 
the little sister heard how it said as it ran: 

"Who drinks of me, a Tiger be! 
Who drinks of me, a Tiger be!" 

Then the little sister cried, " Pray, dear little Brother, do not 
drink, or you will become a wild beast, and tear me to pieces." 
The little brother did not drink, although he was so thirsty, 
but said, " I will wait for the next spring." 

When they came to the next brook, the little sister heard 
this say: 

"Who drinks of me, a wild Wolf be! 
Who drinks of me, a wild Wolf be!" 

Then the little sister cried out, " Pray, dear little Brother, do 
not drink, or you will become a Wolf, and devour me." 

The little brother did not drink, and said, " I will wait until 
we come to the next spring, but then I must drink, say what 
you like; for my thirst is too great." 

And when they came to the third brook, the little sister heard 
how it said as it ran: 

"Who drinks of me, a Roebuck be! 
, Who drinks of me, a Roebuck be!" 

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The little sister said, " Oh, I pray you, dear little Brother, do 
not drink, or you will become a Roe, and run away from me." 

But the little brother had knelt by the brook, and had bent 
down and drunk some of the water. And as soon as the first 
drops touched his lips, he lay there a young Roe. 

And now the little sister wept over her poor bewitehed 
little brother, and the little Roe wept also, and sat sorrowfully 
near to her. But at last the girl said, " Be quiet, dear little 
Roe, I will never, never leave you." 

Then she untied her golden garter and put it round the Roe's 
neck, and she plucked rushes and wove them into a soft cord. 
With this she tied the little animal and led it on; and she 
walked deeper and deeper into the forest. 

And when they had gone a very long way, they came to a 
little house. The girl looked in; and as it was empty, she 
thought, " We ean stay here and live." 

Then she sought for leaves and moss to make a soft bed for 
the Roe. Every morning she went out and gathered roots and 
berries and nuts for herself, and brought tender grass for the 
Roe, who ate out of her hand, and was content and played 
round about her. In the evening, when the little sister was 
tired, and had said her prayer, she laid her head upon the Roe's 
back: that was her pillow, and she slept softly on it. And if 
only the little brother had had his human form, it would have 
been a delightful life. 

For some time, they were alone like this in the wilderness. 

But it happened that the King of the country held a great hunt 

in the forest. Then the blasts of the horns, the barking of 

dogs, and the merry shouts of the huntsmen rang through the 


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trees, and the Roe heard all, and was only too anxious to be 

" Oh," said he to his little sister, " let me be off to the hunt, 
I cannot bear it any longer; " and he begged so much that at 
last she agreed. 

" But," said sKe to him, " come back to me in the evening. 
I must shut my door for fear of the rough huntsmen, so knock 
and say, c My little Sister, let me in! ' that I may know you. 
And if you do not say that, I shall not open the door." 

Then the young Roe sprang away; so happy was he and so 
merry in the open air. 

The King and the huntsmen saw the pretty creature, and 
started after him. But they could not catch him, and when 
they thought that they surely had him, away he sprang through 
the bushes and >vas gone. 

When it was dark he ran to the cottage, knocked, and said, 
" My little Sister, let me in." Then the door was opened for 
him, and he jumped in, and rested himself the whole night 
through upon his soft bed. 

The next day, the hunt went on afresh, and when the Roe 
again heard the bugle-horn, and the ho! ho! of the hunts- 
men, he had no peace, but said, " Sister, let me out, I must be 

His sister opened the door for him, and said, " But you must 
be here again in the evening and say your password." 

When the King and his huntsmen again saw the young Roe 

with the golden collar, they all chased him, but he was too 

quick and nimble for them. This went on for the whole day, 

but by evening the huntsmen had surrounded him, and one of 


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them wounded him a little in the foot, so that he limped and 
ran slowly. Then a hunter crept after him to the cottage and 
heard how he said, " My little Sister, let me in," and saw that 
the door was opened for him, and was shut again at once. 

The huntsman took notice of it all, and went to the King 
and told him what he had seen and heard. Then the King said, 
" To-morrow we will hunt once more." 

The little sister, however, was dreadfully frightened when 
she saw that her little Roe was hurt. She washed the blood off 
him, laid herbs on the wound, and said, " Go to your bed, dear 
Roe, that you may get well again." 

But the wound was so slight that the Roe, next morning, 
did not feel it any more. And when he again heard the sport 
outside, he said, " I cannot bear it, I must be there. They 
shall not find it so easy to catch me! " 

The little sister cried, and said, " This time they will kill 
you, and here am I alone in the forest, and forsaken by all the 
world. I will not let you out," 

" Then you will have me die of grief," answered the Roe, 
" When I hear the bugle-horns I feel as if I must jump out of 
my skin." 

Then the little sister could not do otherwise, but opened the 
door for him with a heavy heart, and the Roe, full of health and 
joy, bounded away into the forest. 

When the King saw him, he said to his huntsman, " Now 
chase him all day long till nightfall, but take care that no one 
does him any harm." 

As soon as the sun had set, the King said to the huntsmen, 

" Now come and show me the cottage in the wood; " and when 


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he was at the door, he knocked and called out, " Dear little 
Sister, let me in/ 5 

Then the door opened, and the King walked ifk, and there 
stood a maiden more lovely than any he had ever seen. The 
maiden was frightened when she saw, not her little Roe, but a 
man with a golden crown upon his head. But the King looked 
kindly at her, stretched out his hand, and said: 

" Will you go with me to my palace and be my dear wife? " 

" Yes, indeed," answered the maiden, " but the little Roe 
must go with me. I cannot leave him." 

The King said, " He shall stay with you as long as you live, 
and shall want nothing." 

Just then he came running in, and the little sister again tied 
him with the cord of rushes, took it in her own hand, and 
went away with the King from the cottage* 

The King took the lovely maiden upon his horse and carried 
her to his palace, where the wedding was held with great pomp. 
She was now the Queen, and they lived for a long time happily 
together. The Roe was tended and cherished, and ran about 
in the palace-garden. 

But the wicked Witch, because of whom the children had 
gone out into the world, thought all the time that the little 
sister had been torn to pieces by the wild beasts in the wood, 
and that the little brother had been shot for a Roe by the hunts- 
men. Now when she heard that they were so happy, and so 
well off, envy and hatred rose in her heart and left her no peace, 
and she thought of nothing but how she could bring them again 
to misfortune. 

Her own daughter, who was as ugly as night, and had only 


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one eye, grumbled at her and said, " A Queen ! that ought to 
have been my luck." 

" Only be quiet," answered the old woman, and comforted 
her by saying, u when the time comes I shall be ready." 

As time went on, the Queen had a pretty little boy. It hap- 
pened that the King was out hunting; so the old Witch took 
the form of the chambermaid, went into the room where the 
Queen lay, and said to her, " Come, the bath is ready. It will 
do you good, and give you fresh strength. Make haste before 
it gets cold." 

The daughter also was close by; so they carried the weak 
Queen into the bathroom, and put her into the bath. Then 
they shut the door and ran away. But in the bathroom they 
had made a fire of such deadly heat, that the beautiful young 
Queen was soon suffocated. 

When this was done, the old woman took her daughter, put 
a nightcap on her head, and laid her in bed in place of the 
Queen. She gave her too the shape and the look of the Queen, 
only she could not make good the lost eye. But, in order that 
the King might not see it, she was to lie on the side on which 
she had no eye. 

In the evening, when he came home and heard that he had 
a son, he was heartily glad, and was going to the bed of his 
dear wife to see how she was. But the old woman quickly 
called out, " For your life leave the curtains closed. The 
Queen ought not to see the light yet, and must have rest." 

The King went away, and did not find out that a false Queen 

was lying in the bed. 

But at midnight, when all slept, the nurse, who was sitting 


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in the nursery by the cradle, and who was the only person 
awake, saw the door open and the true Queen walk in. She 
took the child out of the cradle, laid it on her arm and nursed 
it. Then she shook up its pillow, laid the child down again, 
and covered it with the little quilt. And she did not forget the 
Roe, but went into the corner where he lay, and stroked his 
back. Then she went quite silently out of the door again. 

The next morning, the nurse asked the guards whether any 
one had come into the palace during the night, but they an- 
swered, u No, we have seen no one." 

She came thus many nights and never spoke a word. The 
nurse always saw her, but she did not dare to tell any one about 

When some time had passed in this manner, the Queen be- 
gan to speak in the night, and said : 

4 'Bow fares my child, how fares my Roe? 
Twice shall I come, then never moel " 

The nurse did not answer, but when the Queen had gone 
again, went to the King and told him all. 

The King said, "Ah, heavens! what is this? To-morrow 
night I will watch by the child." 

In the evening he went into the nursery, and at midnight the 
Queen again appeared, and said : 

"Eow fares my chMd, liow fares my Boet 
Once shall I come, then never moe! ,y 

And she nursed the child as she was wont to do before she 

disappeared. The King dared not speak to her* hut on the 

next night he watched again. Then she said ; 


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4 'How fares my child, how fares my Roe? 
This time I come, then never moe! " 

At that the King could not restrain himself. He sprang to- 
ward her, and said, " You can be none other than my dear 

She answered, " Yes, I am your dear wife," and at the same 
moment she received life again, and by God's grace became 
fresh, rosy, and full of health. 

Then she told the King the evil deed which the w r icked Witch 
and her daughter had been guilty of toward her. The King 
ordered both to be led before the judge, and judgment was 
delivered against them. The daughter was taken into the 
forest where she was torn to pieces by wild beasts, but the 
Witch was cast into the fire and miserably burnt. 

And as soon as she was burnt the Roe changed his shape, and 
received his human form again. So the little sister and little 
brother lived happily together all their lives. 


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THERE was once on a time, a little girl whose father 
and mother were dead. She was so poor that she no 
longer had any little room to live in, or bed to sleep in. 
At last, she had nothing else but the clothes she was wearing 
and a little bit of bread in her hand which some charitable soul 
had given her. She was, however, good and pious. 

And as she was thus forsaken by all the world, she went forth 
into the open country, trusting in the good God. 

Then a poor man met her, who said, "Ah, give me something 
to eat, I am so hungry! " 

She reached him the whole of her piece of bread, and said, 
" May God bless it to your use," and went onward. 

Then came a child who moaned and said, " My head is so 
cold, give me something to cover it with." 

So she took off her hood and gave it to him. 

And when she had walked a little farther, she met another 

child who had no jacket and was frozen with cold. Then she 

gave it her own. 


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A little farther on one begged for a frock, and she gave away 
that also. 

At length, she got into a forest and it had already become 
dark, and there came yet another child, and asked for a little 
shirt. The good little girl thought to herself, " It is a dark 
night and no one sees me. I can very well give my little shirt 
away," and took it off, and gave away that also. 

And she so stood, and had not one single thing left. Then 
suddenly some Stars from heaven fell down, and they were 
nothing else but hard smooth pieces of money! And although 
she had just given her little shirt away, lo! she had a new one 
which was of the very finest linen. 

Then she gathered together the money into this, and was 
rich all the days of her life. 


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THERE was once on a time, a Fisherman who lived 
with his wife in a miserable hovel close by the sea, and 
every day he went out fishing. And once, as he was 
sitting with his rod, looking at the clear water, his line sud- 
denly went down, far down below, and when he drew it up 
again, he brought out a large Flounder. 

Then the Flounder said to him : " Hark, you Fisherman, I 
pray you, let me live. I am no Flounder really, but an en- 
chanted Prince. What good will it do you to kill me? I 
should not be good to eat. Put me in the water again, and let 
me go." 

" Come," said the Fisherman, " there is no Meed for so many 
words about it — a, fish that can talk I should certainly let go, 

With that he put him back again into the clear water, and 
the Flounder went to the bottom, leaving a long streak of blood 
behind him. Then the Fisherman got up and went home to his 

wife in the hoveL 


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" Husband/' said the woman, " have you caught nothing 
to-day? " 

" No/' said the man, " I did catch a Flounder, who said he 
was an enchanted Prince, so I let him go again." 

" Did you not wish for anything first? " said the woman. 

" No," said the man; " what should I wish for? " 

" Ah," said the woman, " it is surely hard to have to live 
always in this dirty hovel. You might have wished for a small 
cottage for us. Go back and call him. Tell hiin we want to 
have a small cottage. He will certainly give us that." 

" Ah," said the man, " why should I go there again? " 

" Why/' said the woman, " you did catch him, and you let 
him go again. He is sure to do it. Go at once." 

The man still did not quite like to go, but did not want to 
oppose his wife, and went to the sea. 

When he got there the sea was all green and yellow, and no 
longer smooth. So he stood and said: 


4 'Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Come, I pray thee, here to me; 
For my wife, Dame Ilsabil, 
Wills not as I'd have her will." 

Then the Flounder came swimming to him and said, " Well, 

what does she want, then? " 

" Ah," said the man, " I did catch you, and my wife says 

I really ought to have wished for something. She does not 

like to live in a wretched hovel any longer. She would like to 

have a cottage." 

" Go, then," said the Flounder, " she has it already/' 


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When the man got home, his wife was no longer in the hovel. 
But instead of it, there stood a small cottage, and she was sit- 
ting on a beneh before the door. Then she took him by the 
hand and said to him, " Just come inside, look. Now isn't this 
a great deal better? " 

So they went in, and there was a small porch, and a pretty 
little parlor and bedroom, and a kitchen and pantry, with the 
best of furniture, and fitted up with the most beautiful things 
made of tin and brass, whatsoever was wanted. And behind 
the cottage, there was a small yard, with hens and ducks, and 
a little garden with flowers and fruit. 

" Look," said the wife, " is not that nice! " 

" Yes," said the husband, " and so we must always think 
it, — now we will live quite contented." 

" We will think about that," said the wife. 

With that they ate something and went to bed. 

Everything went well for a week or a fortnight, and then 
the woman said, " Hark you, Husband, this cottage is far too 
small for us, and the garden and yard are little. The Flounder 
might just as well have given us a larger house. I should like 
to live in a great stone castle.- Go to the Flounder, and tell 
him to give us a castle." 

"Ah, Wife," said the man, w the cottage is quite good 
enough. Why should we live in a castle? " 

" What! " said the woman; " go at once, the Flounder can 
always do that." 

" No, Wife," said the man, " the Flounder has just given 
us the cottage. I do not like to go back so soon, it might make 

him angry." 


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* Go," said the woman, " he can do it quite easily, and Will 
be glad to do it. Just you go to him." 

The man's heart grew heavy, and he did not wish to go. He 
said to himself, " It is not right," and yet he went. 

And when he came to the sea, the water was quite purple 
and dark-blue, and gray and thick, and no longer green and 
yellow, but it was still quiet. And he stood there and said: 

"Flounder, Flounder in the sea-, 
Come, I pray thee, here to trie; 
For my wife, Dame IlsabU, 
Wills not as I'd have her will." 

** .Well, what does she want, now? " said the Flounder. 

" Alas," said the man, half scared, " she wants to live in a 
great stone castle." 

" Go to it, then, she is standing before the door," said the 

Then the man went home, and when he got there, he found 
a great stone palace, and his wife was just standing on the 
steps going in. She took him by the hand and said, " Come 

So he went with her, and in the castle was a great hall paved 
with marble, and many servants, who flung wide the doors. 
The walls were all bright with beautiful hangings, and in the 
rooms were chairs and tables of pure gold. Crystal chande- 
liers hung from the ceiling, and all the rooms and bedrooms 
had carpets. Food and wine of the very best were standing on 
all the tables, so that they nearly broke down beneath it. 

Behind the bouse, too, there was a great courtyard, with 


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stables for horses and cows, and the very best of carriages. 
There was a magnificent large garden, too, with the most beau- 
tiful flowers and fruit-trees, and a park quite half a mile long, 
in which were stags, dear, and hares, and everything that could 
be desired. 

" Come," said the woman, ** isn't that beautiful? 9 * 

"Yes, indeed," said the man, " now let it be; and we will 
live in this beautiful castle and be content." 

" We will consider about that," said the woman, " and sleep 
upon it; " thereupon they went to bed. 

Next morning, the wife awoke first. It was just daybreak, 
and from her bed she saw the beautiful country lying before 
her. Her husband was still stretching himself, so she poked 
him in the side with her elbow, and said, " Get up, Husband, 
and just peep out of the window. Look you, couldn't we be 
the King over all that land? Go to the Flounder, we will be 
the King." 

" Ah, Wife," said the man, " why should we be King? I 
do not want to be King." 

" Well," said the wife, " if you won't be King, I will. Go 
to the Flounder, for I will be King." 

" Ah, Wife," said the man, " why do you want to be King? 
I do not like to say that to him." 

" Why not? " said the woman; " go to him at once. I must 
be King! " 

So the man went, and was quite unhappy because his wife 
wished to be King. " It is not right; it is not right," thought 
he. He did not wish to go, but yet he went. 

And when he came to the sea, it was quite dark-gray, and the 


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water heaved up from below, and smelt putrid. Then he went 
and stood by it, and said: 

"Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Come, I pray thee, here to me; 
For my wife, Dame Ilsabtl, 
Wills not as I'd have her tvilL" 

" Well, what does she want, now? " said the Flounder* 

" Alas," said the man, " she wants to be King." 

" Go to her; she is King already." 

So the man went, and when he came to the palace, the castle 
had become much larger, and had a great tower and magnifi- 
cent ornaments. The sentinel was standing before the door, 
and there were numbers of soldiers with kettledrums and 
trumpets. And when he went inside the house, everything was 
of real marble and gold, with velvet covers and great golden 
tassels. Then the doors of the hall were opened, and there was 
the Court in all its splendor, and his wife was sitting on a high 
throne of gold and diamonds, with a great crown of gold on her 
head, and a sceptre of pure gold and jewels in her hand. On 
both sides of her, stood her maids-in-waiting in a row, each 
of them always one head shorter than the last. 

Then he went and stood before her, and said, " Ah, Wife, 
and now you are King." 

" Yes," said the woman, " now I am King." 

So he stood and looked at her, and when he had looked at 
her thus for some time, he said, " And now that you are King, 
let all else be, we will wish for nothing more." 

" Nav, Husband," said the woman, quite anxiously, " I find 


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time pass very heavily, I can bear it no longer. Go to the 
Flounder — I am King, but I must be Emperor, too. 55 

" Alas, Wife, why do you wish to be Emperor? 55 

" Husband, 55 said she, " go to the Flounder. I will be Em- 
peror.' 5 

"Alas, Wife," said the man, " He cannot make you Emperor, 
I may not say that to the fish. There is only one Emperor in 
the land. An Emperor, the Flounder cannot make you! I 
assure you he cannot, 55 

"What! 55 said the woman, "I am the King, and you are 
nothing but my husband. Will you go this moment? go at 
once! If he can make a King, he can make an Emperor. I 
will be Emperor. (Jo instantly. 55 

So he was forced to go. As the man went, however, he was 
troubled in mind, and thought to himself, " It will not end 
well! It will not end well! Emperor is too shameless! The 
Flounder will at last be tired out. 55 

With that, he reached the sea, and the sea was quite black 
and thick, and began to boil up from below, so that it threw 
up bubbles. And such a sharp wind blew over it that it 
curdled, and the man was afraid. Then he went and stood by 
it, and said : 

"Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Come, I pray thee, here to me; 
For my mfe, Dame Ilsabil, 
Wills not as I'd have her will." 

" Well, what does she want, now? 55 said the Flounder. 

" Alas, Flounder,' 5 said he, " my wife wants to be Emperor. 55 

" Go to her, 55 said the Flounder; " she is Emperor already. 55 


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So the man went, and when he got there the whole palace 
was made of polished marble with alabaster figures and golden 
ornaments. And soldiers were marching before the door blow- 
ing trumpets, and beating cymbals and drums. In the house, 
barons, and counts, and dukes were going about as servants. 
Then they opened the doors to him, which were of pure gold. 
And when he entered, there sat his wife on a throne, which was 
made of one piece of gold, and was quite two miles high; and 
she wore a great golden crown that Avas three yards high, and 
set with diamonds and carbuncles. In one hand she had the 
sceptre, and in the other the imperial orb. And on both sides 
of her stood the yeomen of the guard in two rows, each, being 
smaller than the one before him, from the biggest Giant, who 
was two miles high, to the very smallest Dwarf, just as big as 
my little finger. And before it stood a number of princes and 

Then the man went and stood among them, and said, " Wife, 
are you Emperor now? " 

" Yes," said she, " now I am Emperor." 

Then he stood and looked at her well, and when he had 
looked at her thus for some time, he said, " Ah, Wife, be con- 
tent, now that you are Emperor." 

" Husband," said she, " why are you standing there? Now, 
I am Emperor, but I will be Pope too. Go to the Flounder." 

" Alas, Wife," said the man, " what will you not wish for? 
You cannot be Pope. There is but one in Christendom. He 
cannot make you Pope." 

" Husband," said she, " I will be Pope. Go immediately. 

I must be Pope this very day." 


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"yes," said she "now I AM e.mheror" 

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" No, Wife," said the man, " I do not like to say that to 
Tiim; that would not do, it is too much* The Flounder can't 
make you Pope." 

" Husband," said she, "what nonsense! if He can make an 
Emperor he can make a Pope. Go to him directly. I am 
Emperor, and you are nothing but my husband. Will you go 
at once? " 

Then he was afraid and went. But he was quite faint, and 
shivered and shook, and his knees and legs trembled. And a 
high wind blew over the land, and the clouds flew, and towacd 
evening all grew dark, and the leaves fell from the trees, and 
the water rose and roared as if it were boiling, and splashed 
upon the shore. In the distance he saw ships which were firing 
guns in their sore need, pitching and tossing on the waves. 
And yet in the midst of the sky, there was still a small bit of 
blue, though on every side it was as red as in a heavy storm. 
So, full of despair, he went and stood in much fear, and said: 

"Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Come, I pray thee, here to me; 
For my wife, Dame IlsabU, 
Wills not as I'd have her mitt." 

" Well, what does she want* now? " said the Flounder. 

" Alas," said the man, " she wants to be Pope." 

" Go to her then," said the Flounder; " she is Pope already." 

So he went, and when he got there, he saw what seemed to 

be a large church surrounded by palaces. He pushed his way 

through the crowd. Inside, however, everything was lighted 

with thousands and thousands of candles, and his wife was 

clad in gold, and she was sitting on a much higher throne, and 


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had three great golden crowns on, and round about her there 
was much churchly splendor. And on both sides of her was 
a row of candles, the largest of which was as tall as the very 
tallest tower, down to the very smallest kitchen candle; and all 
the emperors and kings were on their knees before her, kissing 
her shoe. 

" Wife," said the man, and looked attentively at her, " are 
you now Pope? " 

" Yes," said she, " I am Pope." 

So he stood and looked at her, and it was just as if he was 
looking at the bright sun. When he had stood looking at her 
thus for a short time, he said, " Ah, Wife, if you are Pope, do 
let well alone!" 

But she looked as stiff as a post, and did not move or show 
any signs of life. Then said he, " Wife, now that you are 
Pope, be satisfied, you cannot become anything greater." 

" I will consider about that," said the woman. 

Thereupon they both went to bed. But she was not satisfied, 
and greediness let her have no sleep, for she was continually 
thinking what there was left for her to be. 

The man slept well and soundly, for he had run about a 
great deal during the day. But the woman could not fall 
asleep at all, and flung herself from one side to the other the 
whole night through, thinking what more was left for her to 
be, but unable to call to mind anything else. 

At length the sun began to rise, and when the woman saw 

the red of dawn, she sat up in bed and looked at it. And when, 

through the window, she saw the sun thus rising, she said, 

" Cannot I, too, order the sun and moon to rise? " 


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" Husband," said she, poking him in the ribs with her el- 
boAvs, " wake up! go to the Flounder, for I wish to be even as 
God is." 

The man was still half asleep, but he was so horrified that he 
fell out of bed. He thought he must have heard amiss, and 
rubbed his eyes, and said, " Alas, Wife, what are you saying? " 

" Husband," said she, " if I can't order the sun and moon 
to rise, and have to look on and see the sun and moon rising, 
I can't bear it. I shall not know what it is to have another 
happy hour, unless I can make them rise myself." Then she 
looked at him so terribly that a shudder ran over him, and said, 
" Go at once. I wish to be like unto God." 

" Alas, Wife," said the man, falling on his knees before her, 
" the Flounder cannot do that. He can make an Emperor 
and a Pope. I beseech you, go on as you are, and be Pope." 

Then she fell into a rage, and her hair flew wildly about her 
head, and she cried, " I will not endure this, I'll not bear it any 
longer. Will you go? " Then he put on his trousers and ran 
away like a madman. 

But outside a great storm was raging, and blowing so hard 
that he could scarcely keep his feet. Houses and trees toppled 
over, mountains trembled, rocks rolled into the sea, the sky 
was pitch black, and it thundered and lightened. And the sea 
came in with black Avaves as high as church-toAvers and moun- 
tains, and all with crests of Avhite foam at the top. Then he 
cried, but could not hear his own words: 

4 'Flounder, Flounder in the sea, 
Come, I pray thee, here to me; 
For my wife, Dame llsabil, 
Wills not as Vd have her will." 

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" Well, what does she want, now? " said the Flounder. 
" Alas," said he, " she wants to be like unto God." 
" Go to her, and you will find her back again in the dirty; 
And there they are living at this very time. 


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ALONG time ago, there lived a King who was famed 
for his wisdom through all the land. Nothing was 
hidden from him, and it seemed as if news of the most 
secret things was brought to him through the air. 

But he had a strange custom. Every day after dinner, when 
the table was cleared, and no one else was present, a trusty 
servant had to bring him one more dish. It was covered and 
even the servant did not know what was in it. Neither did any 
one know, for the King never took off the cover to eat of it, 
until he was quite alone. 

This had gone on for a long time, when one day the servant, 
who took away the dish, was overcome with such curiosity that 
he could not help carrying the dish into his room. When he 
had carefully locked the door, he lifted up the cover, and saw 
a White Snake lying on the dish. But when he saw it, he could 
not deny himself the pleasure of tasting it, so he cut off a little 
bit and put it into his mouth. 

No sooner had it touched his tongue than he heard a strange 


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whispering of little voices outside his window. He went and 
listened, and then noticed that it was the sparrows who were 
chattering together, and telling one another of all kinds of 
things which they had seen in the fields and woods. Eating the 
Snake had given him power to understand the language of 

Now, it so happened, that on this very day the Queen lost 
her most beautiful ring, and suspicion of having stolen it fell 
upon this trusty servant, who was allowed to go everywhere. 
The King ordered the man to be brought before him, and 
threatened with angry words that unless he could, before the 
morrow, point out the thief, he himself should be looked upon 
as guilty and should be executed. In vain, he declared his in- 
nocence. He was dismissed with no better answer. 

In his trouble and fear, he went down into the courtyard, 
and took thought how to help himself out of his trouble. Now 
some ducks were sitting together quietly by a brook and tak- 
ing their rest. And, whilst they were making their feathers 
smooth with their bills, they were having a confidential con- 
versation. The servant stood by and listened. 

They were telling one another of all the places where they 
had been waddling about all the morning, and what good food 
they had found. And one said in a pitiful tone, " Something 
lies heavy on my stomach; as I was eating in haste I swallowed 
a ring which lay under the Queen's window." 

The servant at once seized her by the neck, carried her to 
the kitchen, and said to the cook, " Here is a fine duck. Pray 
kill her." 

" Yes," said the cook, and weighed her in his hand; " she has 


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spared no trouble to fatten herself, and has been waiting long 
enough to be roasted." 

So he cut off her head; and as she was being dressed for the 
spit, the Queen's ring was found inside her. 

The servant could now easily prove his innocence. The 
King, to make amends for the wrong, allowed him to ask a 
favor, and promised him the best place in the Court. The 
servant refused everything, and asked only for a horse and 
some money for traveling, as he had a mind to see the world 
and go about a little. When his request was granted, he 
set out on his way. 

One day he came to a pond, where he saw three fishes caught 
in the reeds and gasping for water. Now, though it is said that 
fishes are dumb, he heard them lamenting that they must per- 
ish so miserably. As he had a kind heart, he got off his horse 
and put the three prisoners back into the water. 

They quivered with delight, put out their heads, and cried 
to him, " We will remember you, and repay you for saving us!" 

He rode on, and after a while it seemed to him that he heard 
a voice in the sand at his feet. He listened, and heard an Ant- 
King complain, " Why cannot folk, with their clumsy beasts, 
keep off our bodies? That stupid horse, with his heavy hoofs, 
has been treading down my people without mercy 1 " 

So he turned on to a side path and the Ant-King cried out 
to him, " We will remember you — one good turn deserves an- 

The path led him into a wood, and there he saw two old 

ravens standing by their nest, and throwing out their young 

ones. " Out with you, you idle, good-for-nothing creatures! " 


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cried they; "we cannot find food for you any longer. .You 
are big enough, and can provide for yourselves." 

But the poor young ravens lay upon the ground flapping 
their wings, and crying, "Oh, what helpless chicks we are! 
We must shift for ourselves, and yet we cannot fly! What 
can we do, but lie here and starve? " 

So the good young fellow alighted and killed his horse with 
his sword, and gave it to them for food. Then they came hop- 
ping up to it, satisfied their hunger, and cried, " We will re- 
member you — one good turn deserves another! " 

And now he had to use his own legs, and when he had walked 
a long way, he came to a large city. There was a great noise 
and crowd in the streets, and a man rode up on horseback, cry- 
ing aloud, " The King's Daughter wants a husband. But 
whoever sues for her hand must perform a hard task. If he 
does not succeed he will forfeit his life." 

Many had already made the attempt, but in vain. Never- 
theless, when the youth saw the King's Daughter he was so 
overcome by her great beauty, that he forgot all danger, went 
before the King, .and declared himself a suitor. 

So he was led out to the sea, and a gold ring was cast into 
it. Then the King ordered him to fetch this ring up from the 
bottom of the sea, and added, " If you come up without 
it, you will be thrown in again and again until you perish amid 
the waves." 

All the people grieved for the handsome youth; then they 
went away, leaving him alone by the sea. 

He stood on the shore and considered what he should do, 

when suddenly he saw three fishes come swimming toward him. 


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They were the very fishes whose lives he had saved. The one 
in the middle held a mussel in its mouth, which it laid on the 
shore at the youth's feet. When he had taken it up and opened 
it, there lay the gold ring in the shell. Full of joy he took it 
to the King, and expected that he would grant him the prom- 
ised reward. 

But when the proud Princess perceived that he was not her 
equal in birth, she scorned him, and required him first to per- 
form another task. She went down into the garden and 
strewed with her own hands ten sacksful of millet-seed on the 

Then she said, " To-morrow morning before sunrise these 
must be picked up, and not a single grain be wanting." 

The youth sat down in the garden and considered how he 
might perform this task. But he could think of nothing, and 
there he sat sorrowfully awaiting the break of day, when he 
should be led to death. But as soon as the first rays of the sun 
shone into the garden, he saw all the ten sacks standing side 
by side, quite full, and not a single grain was missing. The 
Ant-King had come in the night with thousands and thousands 
of ants, and the grateful creatures had, by great industry, 
picked up all the millet-seeds and gathered them into the sacks. 

Presently, the King's Daughter herself came down into the 
garden, and was amazed to see that the young man had done 
the task she had given him. 

But she could not yet conquer her proud heart, and said, 
" Although he has performed both the tasks, he shall not be 
my husband, until he has brought me an apple from the Tree 

of Life." 


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The youth did not know where the Tree of Life stood, but 
he set out, and would have gone on forever, as long as his legs 
would carry him, though he had no hope of finding it. After 
he had wandered through three kingdoms, he came one evening 
to a wood, and lay down under a tree to sleep. 

But he heard a rustling in the branches, and a Golden Apple 
fell into his hand. At the same time three ravens flew down 
to him, perched themselves upon his knee, and said, " We are 
the three young ravens whom you saved from starving. When 
we had grown big, and heard that you were seeking the Golden 
Apple, we flew over the sea to the end of the world, where the 
Tree of Life stands, and have brought you the apple.'* 

The youth, full of joy, set out homeward, and took the 
Golden Apple to the King's beautiful Daughter, who had now 
no more excuses left to make. They cut the Apple of Life in 
two and ate it together; and then her Heart beeame full of love 
for him, and they lived to a great age in undisturbed happi- 


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HARD by a great forest, dwelt a poor wood-cutter with 
his wife and his two children. The boy was called 
Haensel and the girl, Grethel. He had little to bite 
and to break; and once when great scarcity fell on the land, he 
could no longer procure daily bread. 

Now, when he thought over this by night in his bed, and 
tossed about in his anxiety, he groaned and said to his wife, 
"What is to become of us? How are we to feed our poor 
children, when we no longer have anything even for our- 
selves? " 

" I'll tell you what, Husband," answered the woman, " early 
to-morrow morning we will take the children out into the forest 
to where it is the thickest; there we will light a fire for them, 
and give each of them one piece of bread more. Then we will 
go to our work and leave them alone. They will not find the 
way home again, and we shall be rid of them." 

" No, Wife," said the man, " I will not do that. How can I 

bear to leave my children alone in the forest? — the wild animals 

would soon come and tear them to pieces." 


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u Oh, you fool! " said she. " Then we must all four 'die of 
Hunger. You may as well plane the planks for our coffins." 

And she left him no peace until he consented. " But I feel 
very sorry for the poor children, all the same," said the man. 

The two children had also not been able to sleep for hunger, 
and had heard what the woman had said to their father. 

Grethel wept bitter tears, and said to Haensel, " Now all is 
over with us." 

" Be quiet, Grethel," said Haensel, " do not distress your- 
self, I will soon find a way to help us." 

And when the old folk had fallen asleep, he got up, put on 
his little coat, opened the door below, and crept outside. The 
moon shone brightly, and the white pebbles, which lay in front 
of the house, glittered like real silver pennies. Haensel 
stooped and put as many of them in the little pocket of his 
coat as he could possibly get in. 

Then he went back and said to Grethel, " Be comforted, 
dear little Sister, and sleep in peace. God will not forsake us," 
and he lay down again in his bed. 

When day dawned, but before the sun had risen, the woman 
came and awoke the two children, saying, " Get up, you slug- 
gards! we are going into the forest to fetch wood." She gave 
each a little piece of bread, and said, " There is something for 
your dinner, but do not eat it up before then, for you will get 
nothing else." 

Grethel took the bread under her apron, as Haensel had the 
stones in his pocket. Then they all set out together on the way 
to the forest. When they had walked a short time, Haensel 
stood still and peeped back, and did so again and again while 


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lie was throwing the white pebble-stones one by one out of his 
pocket onto the road. 

When they had reached the middle of the forest, the father 
said, " Now, Children, pile up some wood, and I will light a 
fire that you may not be cold." 

Haensel and Grethel gathered brushwood together, as high 
as a little hilL The brushwood was lighted, and when the 
flames were burning very high, the woman said, " Now, Chil- 
dren, lay yourselves down by the fire and rest. We will go 
into the forest and cut some wood. When we have done, we 
will come back and fetch you away." 

Haensel and Grethel sat by the fire, and when noon came, 
each ate a little piece of bread; and, as they heard the strokes 
of the wood-axe, they believed that their father was near. It 
was, however, not the axe, it was a branch which he had 
fastened to a withered tree which the wind was blowing back- 
ward and forward. And as they had been sitting such a long 
time, their eyes shut with fatigue, and they fell fast asleep. 

When at last they awoke, it was already dark night. Grethel 
began to cry and said, " How are we to get out of the forest 
now? " 

But Haensel comforted her, and said, u Just wait a little, 
until the moon has risen, and then we shall soon find the way." 

And when the full moon had risen, Haensel took his little 
sister by the hand, and followed the pebbles which shone like 
newly-coined silver pieces, and showed them the way. 

They walked the whole night long, and, by break of day, 
came once more to their father's house. They knocked at the 
door: and when the woman opened it and saw that it was 


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Haensel and Grethel, she said, " You naughty children, why 
have you slept so long in the forest? — we thought you were 
never coming back at all! " 

The father, however, rejoiced, for it had cut him to the heart 
to leave them behind alone. 

Not long afterward, there was another famine in all parts, 
and the children heard their mother saying at night to their 
father, " Everything is eaten again, we have one-half loaf left, 
and after that there is an end. The children must go, we will 
take them farther into the wood, so that they will not find their 
way out again. There is no other means of saving ourselves! " 

The man's heart was heavy, and he thought " it w T ould be 
better for you to share the last mouthful with your children! " 
The woman, however, would listen to nothing that he had to 
say, but scolded and reproached him. He who says A must 
say B, likewise, and as he had yielded the first time, he had to 
do so a second time also. 

The children were, however, still awake and had heard the 
conversation. When the old folk were asleep, Haensel again 
got up to go out and pick up pebbles. But the woman had 
locked the door, and Haensel could not get out. Nevertheless 
he comforted his little sister, and said, " Do not cry, Grethel, 
go to sleep quietly, the good God will help us." 

Early in the morning, came the woman, and took the chil- 
dren out of their beds. Their bit of bread was given to them, 
but it was still smaller than the time before. On the way into 
the forest, Haensel crumbled his in his pocket, and often stood 
still and threw a morsel on the ground, and little by little, 

threw all the crumbs on the path. 


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The woman led the children still deeper into the forest, 
where they had never in their lives been before. Then a great 
fire was again made, and the mother said, " Just sit there, you 
Children, and when you are tired you may sleep a little. We 
are going into the forest to cut wood. In the evening, when 
we are done, we will come and fetch you away. 3 ' 

When it was noon, Grethel shared her piece of bread with 
Haensel, who had scattered his by the way. Then they fell 
asleep, and evening passed, but no one came to the poor chil- 

They did not awake until it was dark night, and Haensel 
comforted his little sister and said, " Just wait, Grethel, until 
the moon rises, and then we shall see the crumbs of bread which 
I have strewn. They will show us our way home again." 

When the moon came, they set out, but they found no 
crumbs, for the many thousands of birds, which fly about in the 
woods and fields, had picked them all up. Haensel said to 
Grethel, "We shall soon find the way/' but they did not 
find it. 

They walked the whole night and all the next day, from 
morning till evening, but they did not get out of the forest, and 
were very hungry, for they had nothing to eat but two or three 
berries, which grew on the ground. And as they were so 
weary that their legs would carry them no longer, they lay 
down beneath a tree and fell asleep. 

It was now three mornings since they had left their father's 
house. They began to walk again, but they always got deeper 
into the forest. If help did not come soon, they must die of 

hunger and weariness ! 


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When H was middays? they saw a beautiful Snow- White 
Bird sitting on a bough, which sang so delightfully that they 
stood still and listened to it. And when it had finished its 
song, it spread its wings and flew away before them. They 
followed it until they reached a little house, on the roof of 
which it alighted. 

When they came quite up to tHe little Eouse they saw that it 
was built of bread and covered with cakes, but that the win- 
dows were of clear sugar. 

" We will set to work on that," said Haensel, M and have a 
good meal. I will eat a bit of the roof, and you, Grethel, can 
eat some of the window; it will taste sweet." 

Haensel reached up and broke off a little of the roof to try 
how it tasted. Grethel leant against the window and nibbled 
at the panes. Then a soft voice cried from the room; 

4 'Nibble, nibble, gnaw! 
Who nibbles at my door?" 

but the children went on eating without disturbing themselves. 
Haensel, who thought the roof tasted very nice, tore down a 
great piece of it. Grethel pushed out the whole of one round 
window-pane, sat down, and enjoyed herself with it. 

Suddenly the door opened, and a very, very old woman, 
leaning on crutches, came creeping out. Haensel and Grethel 
were so terribly frightened that they let fall what they had in 
their hands. 

The Old Woman, however, nodded her head, and said, " Oh, 

you dear Children, who has brought you here? Do come in, 

and stay with me. No harm shall happen to you." 


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SEe took them both by the hand, and led them into her little 
house. Then she set good food before them, milk and pan- 
cakes, with sugar, apples, and nuts. Afterward she covered 
two pretty little beds with clean white linen, and Haensel and 
Grethel lay down in them, and thought they were in Heaven. 

The Old Woman had only pretended to be so kind. She 
was really a wicked Witch, who lay in wait for children, and 
who had built the little bread house in order to entice them 
there. When a child fell into her power, she killed it, cooked, 
and ate it; and that was a feast-day with her. 

Witches have red eyes, and cannot see far, but they have a 
keen scent like the beasts', and are aware when human beings 
draw near. When Haensel and Grethel came into her neigh- 
borhood, she laughed maliciously, and said mockingly, " I 
have them, they shall not escape me again! " 

Early in the morning before the children were awake, she 
was up. And when she saw both of them sleeping and looking 
so pretty, with their plump red checks, she muttered to herself, 
" That will be a dainty mouthful! " 

Then she seized Haensel with her shrivelled hand, carried 
him into a little stable, and shut him in with a grated door. 
He might scream as he liked, that was of no use! 

Then she went to Grethel, shook her till she awoke, and 
cried, " Get up, lazy thing, fetch some water, and cook some- 
thing good for your brother. He is in the stable outside, and 
is to be made fat. When he is fat, I will eat him." 

Grethel began to weep bitterly. But it was all in vain, she 

was forced to do what the wicked Witch ordered her. 

And now the best food was cooked for poor Haensel, while 


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Grethel got nothing but crab-shells. Every morning the 
woman crept to the little stable, and cried, " Haensel, stretcli 
out your finger that I may feel if you will soon be fat." 

When four weeks had gone by she was seized with impa- 
tience and would not wait any longer. " Ho, there I Grethel/' she 
cried to the girl, " be active, and bring some water. Let 
Haensel be fat or lean, to-morrow I will kill him, and cook 

Ah! how the poor little sister did lament when she had to 
fetch the water, and how her tears did flow down over her 
cheeks! "Dear God, do help us," she cried. "If the wild 
beasts in the forest had but devoured us, we should at any rate 
have died together! " 

" Just keep your noise to yourself ," said the Old Woman, 
" all that won't help you at all." 

Early in the morning, Grethel had to go out and hang up 
the cauldron, full of water, and light the fire. 

" We will bake first," said the Old Woman, " I have already 
heated the oven, and kneaded the dough." She pushed poor 
Grethel out to the oven, from which flames of fire were darting. 

" Creep in," said the Witch, " and see if it is properly 
heated, so that we can shut the bread in." And when once 
Grethel was inside, she intended to shut the oven and let her 
bake in it, and then eat her, too. 

But Grethel saw ^hat she had in her mind, and would not 

creep in. "Silly Goose," said the Old Woman; "the door 

is big enough. Just look, I can get in myself! " and she crept 

up and thrust her head in. Then she fell over into the oven 

and was caiserably burnt to death. 


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Grethel, however, ran as quick as lightning to Haensel, 
opened his little stable, and cried, "Haensel, we are saved! 
The old Witch is dead!" 

Then Haensel sprang out like a bird from its cage, when 
the door is opened for it. How they did rejoice and embrace 
each other, and dance about and kiss each other! And as they 
had no longer any need to fear her, they went into the Witch's 
house, and in every corner there stood chests full of pearls and 

" These are far better than pebbles!" said Haensel, and 
thrust into his pockets whatever could be got in. 

And Grethel said, " I, too, will take something home with 
me," and filled her pinafore full. 

" But now we will go away," said Haensel, " that we may 
get out of the Witch's forest." 

When they had walked for two hours, they came to a great 
piece of water. " We cannot get over," said Haensel, " I see 
no foot-plank, and no bridge." 

"And no boat crosses either," answered Grethel, " but a 
white duck is swimming there. If I ask her, she will help us 
over." Then she cried: 

"Little Duck, little Duck, dost thou see, 
Haensel and Grethel are waiting for thee? 
Therc f s never a plank, nor a bridge in sight, 
Take us across on thy back so tvhite." 

The duek came to them, and Haensel seated himself on her 

back, and told his sister to sit by him. " No," replied Grethel, 

" that will be too heavy for the little duck. She shall take us 

across, one after the other." 


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The good little duek did so, and when they were onee safely 
across and had walked for a short time, the forest seemed to be 
more and more familiar to them. At length, they saw from 
afar their father's house. Then they began to run, rushed into 
the parlor, and threw themselves into their father's arms. The 
man had not known one happy hour since he had left the chil- 
dren in the forest. The woman, however, was dead. 

Grethel emptied her pinafore until pearls and precious 
stones ran about the room, and Haensel threw one handful 
after another out of his pocket to add to them. Then all 
trouble was at an end, and they lived together in perfect hap- 

My tale is done, there runs a mouse, whosoever catches it, 
may make himself a big, big fur cap out of it! 


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THERE was once a man who had seven sons, but never 
a daughter no matter how much he wished for one. 
At length, his wife had a child, and it was a daugh- 
ter. The joy was great. But the child was sickly and small, 
and so weak that it had to be baptized at once. 

The father sent one of the boys in a hurry to the spring, to 
fetch water for the baptism. The other six boys ran along with 
him. And as each strove to be the first to fill the jug, it fell 
into the spring. There they stood, and did not know what to 
do. None of them dared to go home. 

When they did not come back, the father grew impatient, 
and said, " They have forgotten all about it in a game of play, 
the wicked boys ! " 

Soon he grew afraid lest the child should die without being 
baptized, and he cried out in anger, " I wish the boys were all 
turned into Ravens ! " 

Hardly was the word spoken, before he heard a whirring of 

wings in the air above his head. He looked up, and saw seven 

coal-black Ravens flying high and away. 


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The parents could not recall the curse. And though they 
grieved over the loss of their seven sons, yet they comforted 
themselves somewhat with their dear little daughter, who soon 
grew strong and every day more beautiful. 

For a long time, she did not know that she had had brothers. 
Her parents were careful not to mention them before her. 
But one day, she chanced to overhear some people talking 
about her, and saying, " that the maiden is certainly beautiful, 
but really to blame for the misfortune of her seven brothers." 

Then she was much troubled, and went to her father and 
mother, and asked if it was true that she had had brothers, and 
what was become of them. 

The parents did not dare to keep the secret longer, and said 
tHat her birth was only the innocent cause of what had hap- 
pened to her brothers. But the maiden laid it daily to heart, 
and thought that she must deliver her brothers. 

She had no peace and rest until she set out secretly, and went 
forth into the wide world to seek them out, and set them free, 
let it cost what it might. She took nothing with her but a little 
ring belonging to her parents as a keepsake, a loaf of bread 
against hunger, a little piteher of water against thirst, and a 
little ehair as a provision against weariness. 

And now, she went continually onward, far, far, to the very 
end of the world. Then she came to the Sun, but it was too 
hot and terrible, and devoured little children. Hastily she ran 
away, and ran to the Moon, but it was far too cold, and also 
awful and malicious. And when it saw the child, it said; 

"I smell, I smell 
The flesh of mm! " 

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On this she ran swiftly away, and came to the Stars, which 
were kind and good to her, and each of them sat on its own 
little chair. But the Morning Star arose, and gave her the 
drumstick of a ehieken, and said, " If you have not that drum- 
stick you cannot open the Glass Mountain, and in the Glass 
Mountain are your brothers." 

The maiden took the drumstick, wrapped it carefully in a 
cloth, and went onward again until she came to the Glass 
Mountain. The door was shut, and she thought she would 
take out the drumstick. But when she undid the cloth, it was 
empty, and she had lost the good Star's present. What was 
she now to do? She wished to rescue her brothers, and had no 
key to the Glass Mountain. The good little sister took a 
knife, cut off one of her little fingers, put it in the door, and 
succeeded in opening it. 

When she had got inside, a little Dwarf came to meet her, 
who said, " My Child, what are you looking for? " 

" I am looking for my brothers, the Seven Ravens," she re- 

The Dwarf said, " The Lord Ravens are not at home, but if 
you wish to wait here until they come, step in." 

Thereupon the little Dwarf carried the Ravens' dinner in, 
on seven little plates, and in seven little glasses. The little 
sister ate a morsel from each plate, and from each little glass 
she took a sip. But in the last little glass she dropped the 
ring which she had brought away with her. 

Suddenly, she heard a whirring of wings and a rushing 

through the air, and then the little Dwarf said, " Now the Lord 

Ravens are flying home." 


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Then they came, and wanted to eat and drink, and looked for 
their little plates and glasses. Then said one after the other, 
"Who has eaten something from my plate? Who has drunk 
out of my little glass? It was a human mouth." 

And when the seventh came to the bottom of the glass, the 
ring rolled against his mouth. Then he looked at it, and saw 
that it was a ring belonging to his father and mother, and said, 
"God grant that our little sister may be here, and then we shall 
be free." 

When the maiden, who was standing behind the door watch- 
ing, heard that wish, she came forth, and on this all the Ravens 
were restored to their human form again. And they embraced 
and kissed each other, and went joyfully home. 


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THE wife of a rich man fell siek, and as she felt that her 
end was drawing near, she called her only daughter to 
her bedside and said, " Dear Child, be good and pious, 
and then the dear God will always protect you, and I will look 
down on you from Heaven and be near you." Thereupon she 
closed her eyes and departed. 

Every day, the maiden went out to her mother's grave and 
wept, and she remained pious and good. When winter came 
the snow spread a white sheet over the grave, and when the 
spring-sun had drawn it off again, the man had taken another 

The woman had brought two daughters into the house with 
her, who were beautiful and fair of face, but vile and black of 
heart. Now began a bad time for the poor child. " Is the 
stupid goose to sit in the parlor with us?" said they. "He 
who wants to eat bread, must earn it. Out with the kitchen- 
wench! " 

They took her pretty clothes away from her, put an old gray 

bedgown on her and gave her wooden shoes, " Just look at the 


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proud Princess, how decked out she is!" they cried, and 
laughed, and led her into the kitchen. 

There she had to do hard work from morning till night, get 
up before daybreak, carry water, light fires, cook and wash. 
Besides this, the sisters did her every imaginable injury — they 
mocked her and emptied her peas and lentils into the ashes, so 
that she was forced to sit and pick them out again. 

In the evening, when she had worked till she was weary, she 
had no bed to go to, but had to sleep by the fireside in the ashes. 
And as on that account she always looked dusty and dirty, 
they called her Ash-Maiden. 

It happened once that the father was going to thle Fair, and 
he asked the two daughters what he should bring back for 

" Beautiful dresses," said one. " Pearls and jewels," said 
the second. 

" And you, Ash-Maiden," said he, " what will you have? " 

" Father, break off for me the first branch which knocks 
against your hat on your way home." 

So he bought beautiful dresses, pearls and jewels for the two 
daughters, and on his way home, as he was riding through a 
green thicket, a hazel twig brushed against him and knocked 
off his hat. Then he broke off the branch and took it with him. 

When he reached home he gave the two daughters the things 

which they had wished for, and to Ash-Maiden he gave the 

branch from the hazel-bush. Ash-Maiden thanked him, went 

to her mother's grave and planted the branch on it, and wept 

so much that the tears fell down on it and watered it. 

It grew, however, and became a handsome tree. Thrice a 


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day Ash-Maiden went and sat beneath it, and wept and 
prayed, and a little White Bird always came on the tree. And 
if Ash-Maiden expressed a wish, the bird threw down to her 
what she had wished for. 

It happened that the King gave a feast, which was to last 
three days. To it all the beautiful young girls in the country 
were invited, in order that his son might choose himself a Bride. 
When the two sisters heard that they too were to appear among 
the number, they were delighted. 

They called Ash-Maiden and said, " Comb our hair, brush 
our shoes, and fasten our buckles, for we are going to the feast 
at the King's palace." 

Ash-Maiden obeyed, but wept, because she too would have 
liked to go with them to the dance, and she begged her mother 
to allow her to do so. 

"You go, Ash-Maiden!" said she; "you are dusty and 
dirty, and would go to the feast? You have no clothes and 
shoes, and yet would dance! " 

As, however, Ash-Maiden went on asking, the mother at last 
said, " I have emptied a dish of lentils into the ashes for you. 
If you have picked them out again in two hours, you shall go 
with us." 

The maiden went through the back-floor into the garden, 
and called, " You tame Pigeons, you Turtledoves, and all you 
birds beneath the sky, come and help me to pick 

"The good into the pot, 
The bad into the crop! '* 

Then two white pigeons came in by the kitchen-window, and 


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afterward the turtledoves. And at last all the birds beneath 
the sky came whirring and crowding in, and alighted amongst 
the ashes. And the pigeons nodded with their heads and be- 
gan pick, pick, pick, pick, and the rest began also pick, 
pick, pick, pick, and gathered all the good grains into the dish. 
Hardly had one hour passed before they had finished, and all 
flew out again. 

Then the girl took the dish to the mother, and was glad, and 
believed that now she would be allowed to go with them to the 

But the mother said, " No, Ash-Maiden, you have no clothes 
and you cannot dance. You would only be laughed at." 

And as Ash-Maiden wept at this, the mother said, " If you 
can pick two dishes of lentils out of the ashes for me in one 
hour, you shall go with us." And she thought to herself, 
" That she most certainly cannot do." 

When the mother had emptied the two dishes of lentils 
amongst the ashes, the maiden went through the back-door into 
the garden and cried, " You tame Pigeons, you Turtledoves, 
and all you birds under heaven, come and help me to pick 

"The good into the pot, 
The had into the crop! " 

Then two white pigeons came in by the kitchen-window, and 
afterward the turtledoves. And at last all the birds be- 
neath the sky came whirring and crowding in, and alighted 
amongst the ashes. And the doves nodded with their heads 
and began pick, pick, pick, pick, and the others began also pick, 

pick, pick, pick, and gathered all the good seeds into the dishes. 


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And before half an hour was over they had already finished, and 
all flew out again. 

Then the maiden carried the dishes to the mother and was 
delighted, and believed that she might now go with them to the 

But the mother said, "All this will not help you. You go 
not with us, for you have no clothes and cannot dance. We 
should be ashamed of you!" 

Then she turned her back on Ash-Maiden, and hurried away 
with her two proud daughters. 

As no one was now at home, Ash-Maiden went to her 
mother's grave beneath the hazel-tree, and cried; 

"Shiver and quiver, Little Tree, 
Stiver and gold throw over me! " 

Then the bird threw a gold and silver dress down to her, 
and slippers embroidered with silk and silver. She put on the 
dress with all speed, and went to the feast. 

Her sisters and the mother, however, did not know her, and 
thought she must be a foreign Princess, for she looked so beau- 
tiful in the golden dress. They never once thought of Ash- 
Maiden, and believed that she was sitting at home in the dirt, 
picking lentils out of the ashes. 

The Prince went to meet her, took her by the hand, and he 
danced with her. He would dance with no other maiden, and 
never let go of her hand. And if any one else came to invite 
her, he said, " This is my partner." 

She danced till it was evening, and then she wanted to go 
home. But the King's Son said, " I will go with you and bear 


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you company," for he wished to see to whom the beautiful 
maiden belonged* 

She escaped from him, however, and sprang into the pigeon- 
house. The King's Son waited until her father came, and then 
he told him that the stranger maiden had leapt into the pigeon- 
house. The old man thought, " Can it be Ash-Maiden? " and 
they had to bring him an axe and a pickaxe that he might hew 
the pigeon-house to pieces, but no one was inside it. 

And when they got home, Ash-Maiden lay in her dirty 
clothes among the ashes, and a dim little oil-lamp was burning 
on the mantelpiece. For Ash-Maiden had jumped quickly 
down from the back of the pigeon-house, and had run to the 
little hazel-tree. There she had taken off her beautiful clothes 
and laid them on the grave, and the bird had taken them away 
again. Then she had placed herself in the kitchen amongst the 
ashes, in her gray gown. 

Next day, when the feast began afresh, and her parents and 
the sisters had gone once more, Ash-Maiden went to the hazel- 
tree, and said: 

"Shiver and quiver, Little Tree, 
Silver and gold thrmv over me! " 

Then the bird threw down a much more beautiful dress than 
on the preceding day. And when Ash-Maiden appeared at 
the feast in this dress, every one was astonished at her beauty. 

The King's Son had waited until she came, and instantly 

took her by the hand and danced with no one but her. When 

others came and invited her, he said, " She is my partner." 

When evening arrived, she wished to leave, and the King's 


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Son followed her, and wanted to see into which house she went. 
But she sprang away from him, and into the garden behind the 
house. Therein stood a beautiful tall tree on which hung the 
most magnificent pears. She clambered, like a squirrel, so 
nimbly between the branches, that the King's Son did not 
know where she was gone. 

He waited until her father came, and said to him, " The 
stranger-maiden has escaped from me, and I believe she has 
climbed up the pear-tree." 

The father thought, u Can it be Ash-Maiden? " and had an 
axe brought and cut the tree down, but no one was on it. 

And when they got into the kitchen, Ash-Maiden lay there 
amongst the ashes, as usual, for she had jumped down on the 
other side of the tree, had taken the beautiful dress to the bird 
on the little hazel-tree, and had put on her gray gown. 

On the third day, when the parents and sisters had gone 
away, Ash-Maiden went once more to her mother's grave, and 
said to the little tree: 

"Shiver and quiver. Little Tree, 
Silver and gold throw over me! " 

And now the bird threw down to her a dress which was more 
splendid and magnificent than any she had yet had, and the 
slippers were golden. 

And when she went to the feast in the dress, no one knew 

how to speak for astonishment. The King's Son danced with 

her only, and if any one invited her to dance, he said, " She is 

my partner/' 

When evening came, Ash-Maiden wished to leave, and the 


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King's Son was anxious to go with her; but she escaped from 
him so quickly that he could not follow her. The King's Son, 
however, had caused the whole staircase to be smeared with 
pitch, and there, when she ran down, had the maiden's left 
slipper remained sticking. The King's Son picked it up, and 
it was small and dainty, and all golden. 

Next morning, he went with it to the father, and said to him, 
" No one shall be my wife, but she whose foot this golden slip- 
per fits." 

Then were the two sisters glad, for they had pretty feet. 
The eldest went with the shoe into her room and wanted to try 
it on, and her mother stood by. But she could not get her big 
toe into it, for the shoe was too small for her. 

Then her mother gave her a knife, and said, " Cut the toe 
off. When you are Queen you will have no more need to go 
on foot/' 

The maiden cut the toe off, forced the foot into the shoe, 
swallowed the pain, and went out to the King's Son, Then 
he took her on his horse as his Bride, and rode away with her. 
They were, however, obliged to pass the grave 4 and there, on 
the hazel-tree, sat the two pigeons and cried: 

"Turn and peep, turn and peep, 
There's blood within the shoe! 
The shoe it is too small for her y 
The true Bride waits for you!" 

Then he looked at her foot, and saw how the blood was stream- 
ing from it. He turned his horse round and took the false 
Bride home again, and said she was not the true one, and that 

the other sister was to put the shoe on. 


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Then this one went into her chamber and got her toes safely 
into the shoe, but her heel was too large. 

So her mother gave her a knife, and said, " Cut a bit off your 
heel. When you are Queen you will have no more need to go 
on foot." 

The maiden cut a bit off her heel, forced her foot into the 
shoe, swallowed the pain, and went out to the King's Son, He 
took her on his horse as his Bride, and rode away with her. 
But when they passed by the hazel-tree, two little pigeons sat 
on it, and cried; 

"Turn and peep, turn and peep t 
There's blood ivithin the shoe! 
The shoe it is too small for her, 
The true Bride waits for you!" 

He looked down at her foot, and saw how the blood was run- 
ning out of her shoe, and how it had stained her white stocking. 
Then he turned his horse and took the false Bride home again. 
" This also is not the right one," said he. " Have you no other 

"No," said the man; "there is only a little stunted 
kitchen-girl which my late wife left behind her, but she cannot 
possibly be the Bride." 

The King's Son said he was to send her up to him; but the 
mother answered, " Oh, no, she is much too dirty, she cannot 
show herself I " 

He insisted on it, and Ash-Maiden had to be called. She 

first washed her hands and face clean, and then went and bowed 

down before the King's Son, who gave her the golden shoe. 

Then she seated herself on a stool, drew her foot out of the 


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heavy wooden shoe, and put it into the slipper, which fitted like 
a glove. 

And when she rose up and the King's Son looked at her face 
he recognized the beautiful maiden who had danced with him, 
and cried, " That is the true Bride! " 

The mother and the two sisters were terrified and became 
pale with rage. He, however, took Ash-Maiden on his horse 
and rode away with her* As they passed by the hazel-tree, the 
two white doves cried: 

"Turn and peep, tarn and peep, 
No blood is in the shoe! 
The shoe is not too small for her, 
The true Bride rides with you!" 

and when they had cried that, the two came flying down and 
placed themselves on Ash-Maiden's shoulders, one on the 
right, the other on the left, and remained sitting there. 

When the wedding with the King's Son had to be celebrated, 
the two false sisters came and wanted to get into favor with 
Ash-Maiden and share her good fortune. When the be- 
trothed couple went to church, the elder was at the right side 
and the younger at the left, and the pigeons pecked out one 
eye of each of them. Afterward as they came back, the elder 
was at the left, and the younger at the right, and then the 
pigeons pecked out the other eye of each. And thus, for their 
wickedness and falsehood, they were punished with blindness 
as long as they lived. 


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A SHOEMAKER, by no fault of his own, had become 
so poor that at last he had nothing left but leather for 
one pair of shoes. So in the evening, he cut out the 
shoes which he wished to make the next morning. And as he 
had a good conscience, he lay down quietly in his bed, com- 
mended himself to God, and fell asleep. 

In the morning, after he had said his prayers, and was just 
going to sit down to work, lo! both shoes stood all finished on 
his table. He was astounded, and did not know what to say. 
He took the shoes in his hands to examine them closer, and 
they were so neatly made that there was not one bad stitch in 
them, just as if they were meant for a masterpiece. 

Soon after, a buyer came in, and as the shoes pleased him 
well, he paid more for them than was customary. And, with 
the money, the shoemaker was able to purchase leather for two 
pairs of shoes* 

He cut them out at night, and next morning was about to set 
to work with fresh courage; but he had no need to do so, for, 

when he got up, they were already made. And buyers also 


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were not wanting, who gave him money enough to buy leather 
for four pairs of shoes. 

The following morning, too, he found the four pairs made. 
And so it went on constantly, what he cut out in the evening 
was finished by morning, so that he soon had his honest living 
again, and at last became a wealthy man. 

Now it befell that one evening not long before Christmas, 
when the man had been cutting out, he said to his wife, before 
going to bed, " What think you, if we were to stay up to-night 
to see who it is that lends us this helping hand? " 

The woman liked the idea, and lighted a candle, and then 
they hid themselves in a corner of the room, behind some 
clothes which were hanging there, and watched. 

When it was midnight, two pretty tiny naked Little Men 
came, sat down by the shoemaker's table, took all the work 
which was cut out before them and began to stitch, sew, and 
hammer so skilfully and so quickly with their little fingers, that 
the shoemaker could not turn away his eyes for astonishment. 
They did not stop until all was done, and stood finished on the 
table, and then they ran quickly away. 

Next morning, the woman said, " The Little Men have 
made us rich, and we really must show that we are grateful 
for it. They run about so much, and have nothing on, and 
must be cold. I'll tell you what I'll do. I will make them 
little shirts, coats, vests, and trousers, and knit both of them a 
pair of stockings. Do you make them two little pairs of 

The man said, " I shall be very glad to do it." 

And one night, when everything was ready, they laid their 


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presents, instead of the cut-out work, all together on the table, 
and then concealed themselves to see how the Little Men would 

At midnight they came bounding in, and wanted to get to 
work at once. But as they did not find any leather cut out, 
only the pretty little articles of clothing, they were at first as- 
tonished, and then they showed intense delight. They dressed 
themselves with the greatest rapidity, putting the pretty 
clothes on, and singing: 

"Now we are boys so fine to see, 
Why should we longer cobblers be? *' 

Then they danced and skipped and leapt over chairs and 
benches. At last, they danced out of doors. From that time 
forth they came no more, but as long as the shoemaker lived all 
went well with him, and all his undertakings prospered. 


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THERE was once a man who had three sons, and noth- 
ing else in the world but the house in which he lived. 
Now each of the sons wished to have the house after 
his father's death; but the father loved them all alike, and did 
not know what to do. He did not wish to sell the house, be- 
cause it had belonged to his forefathers, else he might have 
divided the money amongst them. 

At last a plan came into his head, and he said to his sons, 
11 Go into the world, and try each of you to learn a trade. 
When you all come back, he who makes the best masterpiece 
shall have the house." 

The sons were well content with this, and the eldest deter- 
mined to be a blacksmith, the second a barber, and the third a 
fencing-master. They fixed a time when they should all come 
home again, and then each went his way. 

It chanced that they all found skilful masters, who taught 
them their trades well. The blacksmith had to shoe the King's 
horses, and he thought to himself, " The mine, without 

doubt." The barber shaved only great people, and he too ah 


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ready looked upon the house as his own. The fencing-master 
got many a blow, but he only bit his lip, and let nothing vex 
him; " for," said he to himself, " if you are afraid of a blow, 
you'll never win the house." 

When the appointed time had gone by, the three brothers 
came back home to their father. But they did not know how 
to find the best opportunity for showing their skill, so they sat 
down and consulted together* 

As they were sitting thus, all at once a hare came running 
across the field. "Ah, ha, just in time! " said the barber. So 
he took his basin and soap, and lathered away until the hare 
eame up. Then he soaped and shaved off the hare's Whiskers 
whilst he was running at the top of his speed, and did not even 
cut his skin or injure a hair on his body. 

" Well done! " said the old man, " your brothers will have to 
exert themselves wonderfully, or the house will be yours." 

Soon after, up came a nobleman in his coach, dashing along 
at full speed. " Now you shall see what I can do, Father," 
said the blacksmith. So away he ran after the coaeh, took all 
four shoes off the feet of one of the horses whilst he was gallop- 
ing, and put on four new shoes without stopping him. 

" You are a fine fellow, and as clever as your brother," said 
his father. " I do not know to which I ought to give the 

Then tlie third son said, " Fattier, let me Have my turn, if 
you please." And, as it was beginning to rain, he drew his 
sword, and flourished it backward and forward above his head 
so fast that not a drop fell upon him. It rained still harder and 

harder, till at last it came clown in torrents. But he only flour- 


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ished his sword faster and faster, and remained as dry as if he 
were sitting in a house. 

When his father saw this he was amazed, and said, " This is 
the masterpiece, the house is yours! " 

His brothers were satisfied with this, as was agreed before- 
hand. And, as they loved one another very much, they all 
three stayed together in the house, followed their trades, and, 
as they had learnt them so well and were so clever, they earned 
a great deal of money. 

Thus they lived together Happily, until they grew old. And 
at last, when one of them fell sick and died, the two others 
grieved so sorely about it that they also fell ill, and soon after 
died. And because they had been so clever, and had loved one 
another so much, they were all laid in the same grave. 


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THERE was once upon a time, a tailor, who had three 
sons and only one goat. But as the goat supported 
the whole of them with her milk, she was obliged to 
have good food, and to be taken every day to pasture. The 
sons, therefore, did this, in turn. 

Once, the eldest took her to the churchyard, where the finest 
herbs were to be found, and let her eat and run about there. 
At night, when it was time to go home, he asked, " Goat, have 
you had enough? " 
The goat answered: 

"I have eaten so much. 
Not a leaf more I'll touch, 
Ma! Ma!' 9 

" Come home, then," said the youth, and took hold of the 
cord round her neck, led her into the stable and tied her up 

" Well," said the old tailor, " has the goat had as much food 

as she ought? " 


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" Oh," answered the son, " she has eaten so much, not a leaf 
more she'll touch." 

But the father wished to satisfy himself, and went down to 
the stable, stroked the dear animal and asked, " Goat, are you 
satisfied? " 

The goat answered : 

"With what should I be satisfied? 
Among the graves I leapt about, 
And found no food, so went without. 
Ma! Ma!" 

" What do I hear? " cried the tailor, and ran up-stairs and 
said to the youth, " Hollo, you liar; you said the goat had had 
enough, and have let her go hungry! " and in his anger, he took 
the yard-measure from the wall, and drove him out with blows. 

Next day, it was the turn of the second son, who looked out 
for a place in the fence of the garden, where nothing but good 
herbs grew. And the goat cleared them all off. 

At night, when he wanted to go home, he asked, " Goat, are 
you satisfied? " 

The goat answered: 

"I have eaten so much, 
Not a leaf more I'll touch, 
Ma! Ma!" 

" Come home, then," said the youth, and led her home and 

tied her up in the stable. 

" Well," said the old tailor, " has the goat had as much food 

as she ought? " 


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" Oh," answered the son, " she has eaten so much, not a leaf 
more she'll touch." 

The tailor would not rely on this, but went down to the stable 
and said, " Goat, have you had enough? " 

The goat answered : 

"Willi xvhat should I be satisfied? 
Among the graves I le-apt about. 
And found no food, so tvent without, 
Ma! Ma!" 

" The godless wretch! " cried the tailor, " to let such' a good 
animal go hungry," and he ran up and drove the youth out of 
doors with the yard-measure. 

Now came the turn of the third son, who wanted to do the 
thing well, and sought out some bushes with the finest leaves, 
and let the goat devour them. 

In the evening when he wanted to go home, he asked, " Goat, 
have you had enough? " 

The goat answered: 

"I have eaten so much, 
Not a leaf more VU touch, 
Ma! Ma! 9 ' 

" Come home, then," said the youth, and led her into the 
stable, and tied her up. 

" Well," said the old tailor, " has the goat had a proper 
amount of food? " 

" She has eaten so much, not a leaf more she'll touch." 

The tailor did not trust to that, but went down and asked, 

" Goat, have you had enough? " 

The wicked beast answered: 


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"With what should I be satisfied? 

Among the graves I leapt about, 
. And found no leaves, so went without, 
Ma! Ma!" 

" OK, the brood of liars! " cried the tailor, " each as wicked 
and forgetful of his duty as the other! Ye shall no longer 
make a fool of me," and, quite beside himself with anger, he 
ran up-stairs and belabored the poor young fellow so vigor- 
ously with the yard-measure that he sprang out of the house. 

The old tailor was now alone with his goat. Next morning 
he went down into the stable, caressed the goat and said, 
" Come, my dear little animal, I myself will take you to feed." 

He took her by the rope and conducted her to green hedges, 
and amongst milfoil, and whatever else goats like to eat, 
" There you may for once eat to your heart's content," said he 
to her, and let her browse till evening. 

Then he asked, " Goat, are you satisfied? " She replied: 

"J have eaten so much, 
Not a leaf more I'll touch, 
Ma! Ma!" 

" Come home, then," said the tailor, and led her into the 
stable, and tied her fast. 

When he was going away, he turned round again and said, 
" Well, are you satisfied for once? " 

But the goat did not behave better to him, and cried: 

"With wliat should I be satisfied? 
Among the graves I leapt about, 
And found no leaves, so went without, 
Ma! Ma!" 

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When the tailor heard that, he was shocked, and saw clearly 
that he had driven away his three sons without cause. * c Wait, 
you ungrateful creature," cried he, " it is not enough to drive 
you forth, I will mark you so that you will no more dare to 
show yourself amongst honest tailors! " 

In great haste, he ran up-stairs, fetched his razor, lathered 
the goat's head, and shaved her as clean as the palm of his 
hand. And as the yard-measure would have been too good for 
her, he brought the horsewhip, and gave her such cuts with it 
that she ran away with mighty leaps. 

When the tailor was thus left quite alone in his house, he fell 
into great grief, and would gladly have had his sons back again. 
But no one knew whither they were gone. 

The eldest had apprenticed himself to a joiner, and learnt 

industriously and unweariedly, and when the time came for him 

to go on his travels, his master presented him with a little table 

which had no unusual appearance, and was made of common 

wood. But it had one good property; if any one put it down, 

and said: 

"Little Table! 
Set thyself l" 

the good Little Table was at once covered with a clean little 
cloth. And a plate was there, and a knife and fork beside it, 
and dishes with boiled meats and roasted meats, as many as 
there was room for, and a great glass of red wine shone so that 
it made the heart glad. 

The young journeyman thought, "With this you have 
enough for your whole life!" and went joyously about the 
world, and never troubled himself whether an inn was good or 


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bad, or if anything was to be found in it or not. When it suited 
him he did not enter an inn at all, but either in the plain, a 
wood, a meadow, or wherever he fancied, he took his Little 
Table off his back, set it down before him, and said: 

"Little Table! 
Set thyself!" 

and then everything appeared that his heart desired. 

At length, he took it into his head to go back to his father, 
whose anger would now be appeased, and who would now will- 
ingly receive him with his Wishing-Table. It came to pass 
that on his way home, he arrived, one evening, at an inn which 
was filled with guests. They bade him weleome, and invited 
him to sit and eat with them, for otherwise he would have diffi- 
culty in getting anything. 

" No," answered the joiner, " I will not take the few bites 
out of your mouths. Rather than that, you shall be my 

They laughed, and thought he was joking. He, however, 

placed his wooden Little Table in the middle of the room, and 


"Little Table! 
Set thyself!" 

Instantly it was covered with food, so good that the host could 
never have procured it, and the smell of it arose pleasantly to 
the noses of the guests. 

" Fall to, dear Friends/' said the joiner. 

And the guests, when they saw that he meant it, did not need 

to be asked twice, but drew near, pulled out their knives and 


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attacked it valiantly. And what surprised them most, was that 
when a dish became empty, a full one instantly took its place. 
The innkeeper stood in one corner and watched the doings. 
He did not know what to say, but thought, " I could easily 
find use for such a cook as that in my kitchen." 

The joiner and his comrades made merry until late into the 
night. At length they lay down to sleep, and the young ap- 
prentice also went to bed, and set his Magic Table against the 

The host's thoughts, however, let him have no rest. It oc- 
curred to him that there was a little old table in his lumber- 
room, which looked just like the apprentice's. And he brought 
it out quite softly, and exchanged it for the Wishing-Table. 

Next morning, the joiner paid for his bed, took up his table, 
never thinking that he had got a false one, and went his way. 

At midday, he reached his father, who received him with 
great joy, "Well, my dear son, what have you learnt? " said 
he to him. 

" Father, I have become a joiner." 

" A good trade," replied the old man; " but what have you 
brought back with you from your apprenticeship? " 

" Father, the best thing which I have brought back with me 
is this Little Table." 

The tailor examined it on all sides aud said, " You did not 
make a masterpiece, when you made that. It is a bad old 

" But it is a table which furnishes itself " replied the son. 
" When I put it down, and tell it to set itself, the most beauti- 
ful dishes stand on it, and a wine also which gladdens the 


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Heart. Just invite all our relations and friends. They shall 
refresh and enjoy themselves for once, for the table will give 
them all they require." 

When the company was assembled, He put his table in the 
middle of the room and said: 

"Little Table! 
Set thyself!" 

but the little table did not bestir itself, and remained just as 
bare as any other table which did not understand language. 
Then the poor apprentice became aware that his table had been 
changed, and was ashamed at having to stand there like a liar. 

The relations, however, mocked him, and were forced to go 
home without having eaten or drunk. The father brought out 
his patches, and began to tailor again, but the son went to a 
master in the craft. 

The second son had gone to a miller and had apprenticed 
himself to him. When his years were over, the master said, 
" As you have conducted yourself so well, I give you an Ass of 
a peculiar kind, which neither draws a cart nor carries a sack." 

" To what use is he put, then? " asked the young apprentice. 

" He lets gold drop from his mouth," answered the miller. 
" If you set him on a cloth, and say: 

" 'Bricklebritr 

the good animal will drop gold pieces for you." 

" That is a fine thing," said the apprentice, and thanked the 

master, and went out into the world. When he had need of 

gold, he had only to say: 


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io his *Ass, and it rained gold pieces, and he tiad nothing fc do* 
but pick them off the ground. Wheresoever he went, the best 
of everything was good enough for him, and the dearer the 
better, for he had always a full purse. 

When he had looked about the world for some time, he 
thought, " You must seek out your father; if you go to him 
with the Gold-Ass, he will forget his anger, and receive you 

It came to pass, that he reached the same public-house in 
which his brother's table had been exchanged. He led his Ass 
by the bridle, and the host was about to take the animal from 
him to tie him up, but the young apprentice said, " Don't trou- 
ble yourself. I will take my gray horse into the stable, and tie 
him up myself, for I must know where he stands," 

This struck the host as odd, and he thought that a man who 
was forced to look after his Ass himself, could not have much 
to spend. But when the stranger put his hand in his pocket 
and brought out two gold pieces, and said he was to provide 
something good for him, the host opened his eyes wide, and ran 
and sought out the best he could muster. 

After dinner, the guest asked what he owed. The host did 
not see why he should not double the reckoning, and said the 
apprentice must give two more gold pieces. 

He felt in his pocket, but his gold was just at an end. 
" Wait an instant, sir host," said he, " I will go and fetch some 
money; " but he took the tablecloth with him. 

The host could not imagine what this could mean, and being 
curious, stole after him, and as the guest bolted the stable-door, 
he peeped through a hole left by a knot in the wood. 

cp^y^f I971 

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The stranger spread out the cloth under the animal and 


and immediately the beast began to let gold pieces fall, so that 
it fairly rained down money on the ground. 

" Eh, my wordl " said the host, " ducats are quickly coined 
there! A purse like that is not amiss." 

The guest paid his score, and went to bed, but in the night 
the host stole down into the stable, led away the master of the 
mint, and tied up another ass in his place. Early next morn- 
ing, the apprentice went away with the ass, and thought that 
he had his Gold- Ass. 

At midday he reached his father, who rejoiced to see him 
again, and gladly took him in. " What have you made of your* 
self, my Son? " asked the old man. 

" A miller, dear Father," he answered. 

" What have you brought back with you from your travels? " 

" Nothing else but an ass." 

" There are asses enough here," said the father. " I would 
rather have had a good goat." 

" Yes," replied the son, " but it is no common ass, but a 
Gold-Ass. When I say: 


the good beast opens its mouth and drops a whole sheetful of 
gold pieces. Just summon all our relations hither, and I will 
make them rich folk." 

" That suits me well," said the tailor, " for then I shall have 


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no need to torment myself any longer with the needle; " and he 
ran out and called the relations together. 

As soon as they were assembled, the miller bade them make 
way, spread out his cloth, and brought the ass into the room. 
" Now watch/' said he, and cried: 

but no gold pieces fell, and it was clear that the animal knew 
nothing of the art, for every ass does not attain such perfection. 

Then the poor miller pulled a long face, saw that he was 
betrayed, and begged pardon of the relatives, who went home 
as poor as they came. There was no help for it, the old man 
had to betake him to his needle once more, and the youth hired 
himself to a miller. 

The third brother had apprenticed himself to a turner, and 
as that is skilled labor, he was the longest in learning. His 
brothers, however, told him in a letter how badly things had 
gone with them, and how the innkeeper had cheated them of 
their beautiful wishing-gifts on the last evening before they 
reached home. 

When the turner had served his time, and had to set out on 
his travels, as he had conducted himself so well, his master pre- 
sented him with a sack, and said, " There is a Cudgel in it." 

" I can put on the sack," said he, " and it may be of good 
service to me, but why should the Cudgel be in it? It only 
makes it heavy." 

" I will tell you why," replied the master; " if any one has 

done anything to injure you, do but say: 


Out of the sack!' 

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and the Cudgel will leap forth among the people, and play 
sucH a dance on their backs, that they will not be able to stir 
or move for a week, and it will not leave off until you say: 

" 'Cudgel! 

Into the sack! 9 " 

The apprentice thanked him, put the sack on his back, and 
when any one came too near him, and wished to attack him, he 


Out of the sack!" 

and instantly the Cudgel sprang out, and dusted the coat or 
jacket of one after the other on their backs, and never stopped 
until it had stripped it off them. And it was done so quickly, 
that before any one was aware, it was already his own turn. 

In the evening, the young turner reached the inn where his 
brothers had been cheated. He laid his sack on the table before 
him, and began to talk of all the wonderful things which he had 
seen in the world. " Yes," said he, " people may easily find a 
Little Table which will cover itself, a Gold-Ass, and things of 
that kind — extremely good things which I by no means despise 
— but these are nothing in comparison with the treasure which 
I have won for myself, and am carrying about with me in my 
sack there." 

The innkeeper pricked up his ears. " What in the world can 

that be? " thought he. " The sack must be filled with nothing 

but jewels. I ought to get them cheap too, for all good things 

go in threes." 

When it was time for sleep, the guest stretched himself on 


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the bench, and laid his sack beneath him for a pillow. When 
the innkeeper thought his guest was lying in a sound sleep, he 
went to him and pushed and pulled quite gently and carefully 
at the sack to see if he could possibly draw it away and lay 
another in its place. The turner had 4 however, been waiting 
for this for a long time; and now, just as the innkeeper w T as 
about to give a hearty tug, he cried: 

Out of the sack!" 

Instantly the little Cudgel came forth, and fell on the inn- 
keeper, and gave him a sound thrashing. 

The host cried for mercy. But the louder he cried, so much 
the more heavily the Cudgel beat time on his back, until at 
length he fell to the ground exhausted. 

Then the turner said, " If you do not give back the Little 
Table that sets itself, and the Gold- Ass, the dance shall begin 

" Oh, no," cried the host, quite humbly, " I will gladly bring 
out everything, only make the accursed Kobold creep back into 
the sack!" 

Then said the apprentice, " I will let mercy take the place 
of justice, but beware of getting into mischief again! " So he 

Into tJie sack!" 

and let him have rest. 

Next morning, the turner went home to his father with the 

Wishing-Table, and the Gold-Ass. The tailor rejoiced when 


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he saw him once more, and asked him likewise what he had 
learned in foreign parts. 

" Dear Father," said he, " I have become a turner." 

"A skilled trade," said the father. ".What have you 
brought back with you from your travels? " 

" A precious thing, dear Father," replied the son, " a Cudgel 
p in the sack." 

" What! " cried the father, " a Cudgel! That's worth your 
trouble, indeed! From every tree you can cut one for your- 

" But not one like this, dear Father. If I say; 

" 'Cudgel! 

Out of the sack! 9 

the Cudgel springs out and leads any one, who means ill by me, 
a weary dance, and never stops until he lies on the ground and 
prays for fair weather. Look you, with this Cudgel have I got 
back the Wishing-Table and the Gold- Ass, which the thievish 
innkeeper took away from my brothers. Now let them both 
be sent for, and invite all our kinsmen. I will give them to 
eat and to drink, and will fill their pockets with gold into the 

The old tailor would not quite believe, but nevertheless got 
the relatives together. Then the turner spread a cloth in the 
room, and led in the Gold- Ass, and said to his brother, " Now, 
dear Brother, speak to him." 

The miller said: 


and instantly the gold pieces fell down on the cloth like a 


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ihunder-shower, and the Ass did not stop until every one of 
them had so much that he could carry no more. (I can see in 
your face that you also would have liked to be there!) 

Then the turner brought the Little Table, and said, " Now, 
dear Brother, speak to it." And scarcely had the carpenter 


"Little Table! 
Set thyself!" 

than it was spread, and covered with the most exquisite dishes. 
Then such a meal took place as the good tailor had never yet 
known in his house. The whole party of kinsmen stayed to- 
gether till far in the night, and were all merry and glad. The 
tailor locked away needle and thread, yard-measure and goose, 
in a press, and lived with his three sons in joy and splendor. 

.What, however, has beeome of the goat, who was to blame 
for the tailor driving out his three sons? That I will tell you. 

She was ashamed that she had a bald head, and ran to a 
fox's hole and crept into it. When the fox came home, he was 
met by two great eyes shining out of the darkness, and was 
terrified and ran away. A bear met him, and as the fox looked 
quite disturbed, he said, " What is the matter with you, 
brother Fox, why do you look like that? " 

" Ah," answered Redskin, " a fierce beast is in my cave and 
stared at me with its fiery eyes." 

" We will soon drive him out," said the bear, and went with 

him to the cave and looked in. But when he saw the fiery eyes, 

fear seized him likewise. He would have nothing to do with 

the furious beast, and took to his heels. 

The bee met him, and as she saw that he was ill at ease, she 


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said, " Bear, you are really pulling a very pitiful face. What 
has become of all your jollity? " 

" It is all very well for you to talk," replied the bear, " a 
furious beast with staring eyes is in Redskin's house, and we 
can't drive him out/' 

The bee said, " Bear, I pity you! I am a poor weak crea- 
ture, whom you would not turn aside to look at. Yet I believe 
I can help you." She flew into the fox's cave, lighted on the 
goat's clean, shaved head, and stung her so hard that she sprang 
up crying, " Ma! mat " and ran forth into the world like mad; 
and to this hour no one knows where she has gone. 


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ONCE on a time there was a King who had a great 
forest near his palace, full of all kinds of wild animals. 
One day he sent out a huntsman to shoot him a roe, but 
he did not come back. 

" Perhaps some accident has befallen him," said the King, 
and the next day he sent out two more huntsmen who were to 
search for him, but they too stayed away. 

Then on the third day, he sent for all his huntsmen, and 
said, " Scour the whole forest through, and do not give up 
until ye have found all three." But of these also, none came 
home again, and of the pack of hounds which they had taken 
with them, none were seen more. 

From that time forth, no one would any longer venture into 

the forest, and it lay in deep stillness and solitude. Nothing 

was seen but sometimes an eagle or a hawk flying over it. This 

lasted for many years, when a strange huntsman came to the 

King asking for work, and offered to go into the dangerous 

forest. The King, however, would not give his consent, and 


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said, " It is not safe in there. I fear it would fare with you no 
better than with the others, and you would never come out 


The huntsman replied, " Lord, I will venture it at my own 
risk; of fear I know nothing." 

The huntsman therefore betook himself with his dog to the 
forest. It was not long before the dog fell in with some game, 
and wanted to pursue it. But hardly had the dog run two 
steps when he stood before a deep pool and could go no farther. 
Then a naked arm stretched itself out of the water, seized him, 
and drew him under. 

When the huntsman saw that, he went back and fetched 
three men to come with buckets and bale out the water. When 
they could see the bottom, there lay a Wild Man whose body 
was brown like rusty iron, and whose hair hung over his face 
down to his knees. They bound him with cords, and led him 
away to the castle. 

There was great astonishment over the Wild Man. The 
King had him put in an iron cage in his courtyard, and for- 
bade the door to be opened on pain of death, and the Queen 
herself was to take the key into her keeping. And from this 
time forth, every one could once more go into the forest with 

The King had a son, eight years old, who one day was play- 
ing in the courtyard, and while he was playing, his golden 
ball fell into the cage. The boy ran thither and said, " Give me 
my ball." 

" Not till you have opened the door for me," answered the 



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" No," said the boy, " I will not do that. The King has 
forbidden it," and ran away. 

The next day he again went and asked for his ball. The 
Wild Man said, " Open my door," but the boy would not. 

On the third day when the King had ridden out hunting, 
the boy went once more and said, " I cannot open the door even 
if I wished, for I have not the key." 

Then the Wild Man said, " It lies under your mother's pil- 
low. You can get it there." 

The boy, who wanted to have his ball back, cast all thought 
to the winds, and brought the key. The door opened with 
difficulty, and the boy pinched his fingers. When it was open, 
the Wild Man stepped out, gave him the golden ball, and 
hurried away. 

But the boy was afraid. He called and cried after him, 
" Oh, Wild Man, do not go away, or I shall be beaten! " 

The Wild Man turned back, took him up, set him on his 
shoulder, and went with hasty steps into the forest. 

When the King came home, he saw the empty cage, and 

asked the Queen how that had happened. She knew nothing 

about it, and sought the key, but it was gone. She called the 

boy, but no one answered. The King sent out people to seek 

for him in the fields, but they did not find him. Then he could 

easily guess what had happened, and much grief reigned in the 

Royal Court. 

* When the Wild Man had reached once more the dark forest, 

he took the boy down from his shoulder, and said to him, " You 

will never see your father and mother again, but I will keep 

you with me for you have set me free, and I pity you. If you 


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do all I bid you, you shall fare well. Of treasure and gold have 
I enough, and more than any one in the world." 

He made a bed of moss for the boy on which he slept. And 
the next morning, the man took him to a well, and said, " Be- 
hold, the gold well is as bright and clear as crystal; you shall sit 
beside it, and take care that nothing falls into it, or it will be 
polluted. I will come every evening to see if you have obeyed 
my order." 

The boy placed himself by the margin of the well, and often 
saw a golden fish or a golden snake show itself therein, and he 
took care that nothing fell in. As he was sitting thus, his finger 
hurt him so violently that without thinking he put it in the 
water. He drew it quickly out again, but saw that it was quite 
gilded. And whatsoever pains he took to wash the gold off 
again, all was to no purpose. 

In the evening, Iron John came back, looked at the boy, and 
said, " What has happened to the well? " 

" Nothing, nothing," he answered, and held his finger behind 
his back, that the man might not see it. 

But he said, " You have dipped your finger into the water. 
This time it may pass, but take care you do not again let any- 
thing get in." 

At daybreak the boy was already sitting by the well and 
watching it. His finger hurt him again, and he passed it over 
his head, and then unhappily a hair fell down into the well. 
He took it quickly out, but it was quite gilded. 

Iron John came, and already knew what had happened. 

" You have let a hair fall into the well," said he. " I will allow 

you to watch by it once more, but if this happens the third 


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time, then the well will be polluted, and you can no longer re- 
main with me." 

On the third day, the boy sat by the well, and did not stir his 
finger, however much it hurt him. But the time was long to 
him, and he looked at the reflection of his face on the surface 
of the water. And as he still bent down more and more trying 
to look straight into the eyes, his long hair fell down from his 
shoulders into the water. He raised himself up quickly, but 
the whole of the hair of his head was golden, and shone like the 

You may imagine how terrified the poor boy was! He took 
his pocket-handkerchief and tiedjt round his head, in order 
that the man might not see it. 

When he came, he already knew everything, and said, 
" Take off the handkerchief." Then the golden hair streamed 
forth, and let the boy excuse himself as he might, it was of no 
use. " You have not stood the trial, and can no longer stay 
here. Go forth into the world. There you will learn what 
poverty is. But as you have not a bad heart, and as I mean 
well by you, there is one thing I will grant you. If you fall 
into any difficulty, come to the forest and cry, * Iron John/ 
and then I will come and help you. My power is great, 
greater than you think, and I have gold and silver in abun- 

Then the King's Son left the forest, and walked by beaten 

and unbeaten paths ever onward, until at length he reached a 

great city. There he looked for work, but could find none, and 

he had learnt nothing by which he could Help himself. 

At length', he went to the palace, and asked if they would 


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take him in. The people about Court did not know what use 
to make of him, but they liked him, and told him to stay. At 
last, the cook took hijn into his service, and said he might carry 
wood and water, and rake the cinders together. 

Once when it happened that no one else was at hand, the 
cook ordered him to carry the food to the royal table, but as 
he did not like to let his golden hair be seen, he kept his little 
hat on. Such a thing as that had never come under the King's 
notice, and he said, " When you serve at the royal table you 
must take off your hat." 

He answered, " Ah, Lord, I cannot/' 

Then the King had the cook called before him. He scolded 
him, and asked how he could take such a boy as that into his 
service; and said that he was to turn him off at once. The cook, 
however, had pity on him, and exchanged him for the gar- 
dener's boy. 

And now, the boy had to plant and water the garden, hoe 
and dig, and bear the wind and bad weather. 

One day; in summer when he was working alone in the gar- 
den, the day was so warm he took his little hat off that the air 
might cool him. As the sun shone on his hair it glittered and 
flashed so that the rays fell into the bedroom of the King's 
Daughter. Up she sprang to see what it could be. Then she 
saw the boy, and cried to him, " Boy, bring me a wreath of 
flowers/ 5 

He put his hat on with all haste, and gathered wild field- 
flowers and bound them together. When he was ascending the 
stairs with them, the gardener met him, and said, " How can 
you take the King's Daughter a garland of such common flow- 


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ers? Go quickly, and get another, and seek out the prettiest 
and rarest." 

" Oh, no," replied the boy, " the wild ones have more scent, 
and will please her better/' 

When he went into the room, the King's Daughter said, 
" Take your eap off, it is not seemly to keep it on in my pres- 

He again said, " I cannot." 

She, however, caught at his hat and pulled it off, and then 
his golden hair rolled down on his shoulders. And it was 
splendid to behold. 

He wanted to run out, but she held him by the arm, and gave 
him a handful of ducats. With these he departed, but he cared 
nothing for the gold pieces. He took them to the gardener, 
and said, " I give them to your children, they may play with 

The following day, the King's Daughter again called to 
him that he was to bring her a wreath of field-flowers. When 
he went in with it, she snatched at his hat, and wanted to take 
it away from him, but he held it fast with both hands. She 
again gave him a handful of ducats. But he would not keep 
them, and presented them to the gardener as playthings for his 

On the third day, things went just the same. She could not 
get his hat away from him, and he would not have her money. 

Not long afterward, the country was overrun by war. The 

King gathered together his people, and did not know whether 

or not he could overcome the enemy, who was superior in 

strength and had a mighty army. 


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Then said the gardener's boy, " I am grown up, and will 
go to the wars also, pnly give me a horse/ 5 

The others laughed, and said, " Seek one for yourself when 
we are gone. We will leave one behind us in the stable for 

When they Had gone forth, he went into the stable, and got 
the horse. It was lame of one foot, and limped hobblety jig, 
hobblety jig. Nevertheless he mounted it, and rode away to 
the dark forest. When he came to the outskirts, he called 
" Iron John " three times so loudly that it echoed through the 

Thereupon the Wild Man appeared immediately, and said, 
" What do you desire? " 

" I want a strong steed, for I am going to the wars." 

" That you shall have, and still more than you ask." Then 
the Wild Man went back into the forest, and it was not long 
before a stable-boy came out of it, who led a horse that snorted, 
and could hardly be restrained. Behind them followed a great 
troop of soldiers entirely equipped in iron, and their swords 
flashed in the sun. The youth made over his three-legged 
horse to the stable-boy, mounted the other, and rode at the 
head of the soldiers. 

When he drew near the battle-field, a great part of the 

King's men had already fallen, and little was wanting to make 

the rest give way. Then the youth galloped thither with his 

iron soldiers, broke like a hurricane over the enemy, and beat 

down all who opposed him. They began to fly, but the youth 

pursued, and never stopped, until there was not a single man 



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Instead, however, of returning to the King, he conducted 
his troop by side-roads to the forest, and called Iron John. 

" What do you desire? " asked the Wild Man. 

" Take back your horse and troops, and give me my three- 
legged horse again." All that he asked was done, and soon he 
was riding on his three-legged horse. 

When the King returned to his palace, his daughter went to 
meet him, and wished him joy of his victory. " I am not the 
one who carried away the victory," said he, " but a stranger 
Knight who came to my assistance with his soldiers." The 
daughter wanted to hear who the strange Knight was, but the 
King did not know, and said, " He followed the enemy, and I 
did not see him again." 

She inquired of the gardener where his boy was, but he 
smiled, and said, " He has just come home on his three-legged 
horse, and the others have been mocking him, and crying, 
' Here comes our hobblety jig back again! ' They asked, too, 
* Under what hedge have you been lying sleeping all the time? ' 
He, however, answered, ' I did the best of all, and it would have 
gone badly without me/ And then he was ridiculed still 

The King said to his daughter, " I will proclaim a great 
feast that shall last for three days, and you shall throw a 
Golden Apple. Perhaps the unknown will come to it." 

When the feast was announced, the youth went out to the 
forest, and called Iron John. 

" What do you desire? " asked he. 

" That I may catch the King's Daughter's Golden Apple." 

" It is as safe as if you had it already," said Iron John. 


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41 You shall likewise have a suit of red armor for the occasion, 
and ride on a spirited chestnut horse." 

When the day came, the youth galloped to the spot, took 
his place amongst the Knights, and was recognized by no one. 
The King's Daughter came forward, and threw a Golden 
Apple to the Knights. None of them caught it but he; only as 
soon as he had it, he galloped away. 

On the second day, Iron John equipped him as a white 
Knight, and gave him a white horse. Again he was the only 
one who caught the apple, and he did not linger an instant, but 
galloped off with it. 

The King grew angry, and said, " That is not allowed. He 
must appear before me and tell his name." He gave the order 
that if the Knight who caught the apple should go away again, 
they should pursue him, and, if he would not come back will- 
ingly, they should cut him down and stab him. 

On the third day, he received from Iron John a suit of black 
armor and a black horse. Again he caught the apple. But 
when he was riding off with it, the King's attendants pursued 
him, and one of them got so near that he wounded the youth's 
leg with the point of his sword. The youth nevertheless es- 
caped from them, but his horse leapt so violently that the 
helmet fell from his head, and they could see that he had golden 
hair. They rode back and announced this to the King. 

The following day, the King's Daughter asked the gardener 
about his boy. " He is at work in the garden. The queer crea- 
ture has been at the festival too, and only came home yesterday 
evening. He has likewise shown my children three Golden 

Apples which he has won." 


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The King had him summoned into his presence. He came 
and again had his hat on his head. But the King's Daughter 
went up to him and took it off. Then his golden hair fell down 
over his shoulders, and he was so handsome that all were 

"Are you the Knight who came every day to the festival, 
always in different colors, and who caught the three Golden 
Apples? " asked the King, 

" Yes," answered he, " and here are the apples," and Ke took 
them out of his pocket, and returned them to the King. " If 
you desire further proof, you may see the wound which your 
people gave me when they followed me. But I am likewise the 
Knight who helped you win your victory over your enemies." 

" If you can perform such deeds as that, you are no gar- 
dener's boy. Tell me, who is your father? " 

" My father is a mighty King, and gold have I in plenty as 
much as I require." 

" I well see," said the King, " that I owe thanks to yon. 
Can I do anything to please you? " 

" Yes," answered he, " that indeed you can. Give me your 
daughter to wife." 

The maiden laughed, and said, " He does not stand much on 
ceremony, but I have already seen by his golden hair that he 
is no gardener's boy," and then she went and kissed him. 

His father and mother came to the wedding, and were in 
great delight, for they had given up all hope of ever seeing 
their dear son again. And as they were sitting at the marriage- 
feast, the music suddenly stopped, the doors opened, and a 

stately King came in with a great retinue. 


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He went up to the youth, embraced him and said, " I am 
Iron John, and was by enchantment a Wild Man, but you have 
set me free. All the treasures which I possess, shall be 


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THERE was once a man who had a daughter who was 
called Clever Elsie. And when she had grown up her 
father said, " We will get her married." 

" .Yes," said the mother, " if only any one would come who 
would have her," 

At length a man came from a distance, and wooed her, who 
was called Hans. But he made one condition, that Clever 
Elsie should be really wise, 

" Oh," said the father, " she's sharp enough." 

And the mother said, " Oh, she can see the wind coming up 
the street, and hear the flies coughing." 

" Well," said Hans, " if she is not really wise, I won't have 

When they were sitting at dinner, and had eaten, the mother 
said, " Elsie, go into the cellar and fetch some beer." 

Then Clever Elsie took the pitcher from the wall, went into 
the cellar, and tapped the lid briskly as she went that the time 
might not appear long. When she was below she fetched her- 
self a chair, and set it before the barrel, so that she had no need 


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to stoop, and did not hurt her back or do herself any unex- 
pected injury. 

Then she placed the can before her, and turned the tap, and 
while the beer was running, she would not let her eyes be idle, 
but looked up at the wall. And after much peering here and 
there, saw a pickaxe exactly above her, which the masons had 
left there by mistake. 

Then Clever Elsie began to weep and said, " If I get Hans, 
and we have a child, and he grows big, and we send him into the 
cellar here to draw beer, then the pickaxe will fall on his head 
and kill him." Then she sat and wept and screamed with all 
the strength of her body, over the misfortune which lay before 

Those upstairs waited for the drink, but Clever Elsie still 
did not come. Then the woman said to the servant, " Just go 
clown into the cellar and see where Elsie is." 

The maid went and found her sitting in front of the barrel, 
screaming loudly. 

" Elsie, why do you weep? " asked the maid. 

" Ah," she answered, " have I not reason to weep? If I get 
Hans, and we have a child, and he grows big, and has to draw 
beer here, the pickaxe may fall on his head, and kill him." 

Then said the maid, "What a clever Elsie we have!" and 
sat down beside her and began loudly to weep over the mis- 

After a while, as the maid did not come back, and those up- 
stairs were thirsty for the beer, the man said to the boy, " Just 
go down into the cellar and see where Elsie and the girl are." 

The boy went down, and there sat Clever Elsie and the girl 


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both weeping together. Then he asked, " Why are you weep- 


"Ah/ 5 said Elsie, "have I not reason to weep? If I get 
Hans, and we have a ehilcl, and he grows big, and has to draw 
beer here, the pickaxe will fall on his head and kill him." 

Then said the boy, " What a clever Elsie Ave have! " and sat 
down by her, and likewise began to howl loudly. 

Upstairs they waited for the boy, but as he did not return, 
the man said to the woman, " Just go down into the cellar and 
see where Elsie is! " 

The woman went down* and found all three in the midst of 
their lamentations, and inquired what was the eause. Then 
Elsie told her also, that her future child was to be killed by the 
pickaxe, when it grew big and had to draw beer, and the pick- 
axe fell down. 

Then said the mother likewise, " What a elever Elsie we 
have! " and sat down and wept with them. 

The man upstairs waited a short time, but as his wife did 
not eonie back and his thirst grew ever greater, he said, " I 
must go into the cellar myself and see where Elsie is. 55 

But when he got into the cellar, and they were all sitting 
together erying, and he heard the reason, and that Elsie's child 
was the cause, and that Elsie might perhaps bring one into the 
world some day, and that it might be killed by the pickaxe, if 
it should happen to be sitting beneath it, drawing beer just at 
the very time when it fell, he cried, " Oh, Avhat a clever Elsie! " 
and sat down, and likewise wept with them. 

The Bridegroom stayed up-stairs alone for a long time; then 

as no one came baek he thought, " They must be waiting for 


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me below. I, too, must go there and see what they are 

When he got down, all five of them were sitting screaming 
and lamenting quite piteously, each outdoing the other. 

" What misfortune has happened then? " asked he. 

" Ah, dear Hans," said Elsie, " if we marry each other and 
have a child, and he is big, and we perhaps send him here to 
draw something to drink, then the pickaxe which has been left 
up there might dash his brains out, if it were to fall down, so 
have we not reason to weep? " 

" Come," said Hans, " more understanding than that is not 
needed for my household, as you are such a clever Elsie, I will 
have you," and he seized her hand, took her upstairs with him, 
and married her. 

After Hans had had her some time, he said, " Wife, I am 
going out to work and earn money for us. Go into the field 
and cut the corn, that we may have some bread." 

" Yes, dear Hans, I will do that." 

After Hans had gone away, she cooked herself some good 
broth, and took it into the field with her. When she came to 
the field she said to herself, " What shall I do? Shall I shear 
first, or shall I eat first? Oh, I will eat first." 

Then she emptied her basin of broth, and when she was fully 
satisfied, she once more said, " What shall I do? Shall I shear 
first, or shall I sleep first? I will sleep first." Then she lay 
down among the corn and fell asleep. 

Hans had been at home for a long time, but Elsie did not 

come. Then said he, " What a clever Elsie I have. She is so 

industrious, that she does not even come home to eat." 


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As, however, she still stayed away, and it was evening, Hans 
went out to see what she had cut. But nothing was cut, and 
she was lying among the corn, asleep. Then Hans hastened 
home and brought a fowler's net with little bells and hung it 
round about her, and she still went on sleeping. Then he ran 
home, shut the house-door, and sat down in his chair and 

At length, when it was quite dark, Clever Elsie awoke and 
when she got up there was a jingling all round about her, and 
the bells rang at each step which she took. Then she was 
frightened, and became uncertain whether she really was 
Clever Elsie or not, and said, " Is it I, or is it not I? " 

But she knew not what answer to make to this, and stood 
for a time in doubt. At length she thought, " I will go home 
and ask if it be I, or if it be not I. They will be sure to know." 

She ran to the door of her own house, but it was shut. Then 
she knocked at the window and cried, " Hans, is Elsie within? " 

" Yes," answered Hans, " she is within." 

Hereupon she was terrified, and said, "Ah, heavens! Then 
it is not I," and went to another door. 

But when the people heard the jingling of the bells, they 
would not open it, and she could get in nowhere. Then she 
ran out of the village, and no one has seen her since. 


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A CERTAIN man had a Donkey, which had carried the 
corn-sacks to the mill faithfully for many a long year; 
but his strength was going, and he was growing more 
and more unfit for work. 

Then his master began to consider how he might best save 
his keep; but the Donkey, seeing that no good wind was blow- 
ing, ran away and set out on the road to Bremen. 

" There/' he thought, " I can surely be town-musician." 

When he had walked some distance, he found a Hound 
lying on the road, gasping like one who had run till he was 

" What are you gasping so for, you big fellow? " asked the 

" Ah," replied the Hound, " as I am old, and daily grow 
weaker and no longer can hunt, my master wants to kill me. 
So I have taken to flight. But now how am I to earn my 
bread? " 

" I tell you what," said the Donkey, " I am going to Bremen, 

and shall be town-musician there. Come with me and engage 


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yourself also as a musician. I will play the lute, and you shall 
beat the kettledrum," 

The Hound agreed, and on they went. 

Before long, they came to a Cat, sitting on the path, with a 
face like three rainy days! 

"Now then, old shaver, what has gone askew with you?" 
asked the Donkey. 

" Who can be merry when his neck is in danger? " answered 
the Cat, " Because I am now getting old, and my teeth are 
worn to stumps, and I prefer to sit by the fire and spin, rather 
than hunt about after mice, my mistress wants to drown me, 
so I have run away. But now good advice is scarce. Where 
am I to go? " 

" Come with us to Bremen. You understand night-music, 
so you can be a town-musician." 

The Cat thought well of it, and went with them. 

After this the three fugitives came to a farmyard, where 
the Cock was sitting upon the gate, crowing with all his might 

" Your crow goes through and through one," said the Don- 
key. " What is the matter? " 

" I have been foretelling fine weather, because it is the day 
on which Our Lady washes the Christ-child's little shirts, and 
wants to dry them," said the Cock. " But guests are coming 
for Sunday, so the housewife has no pity, and has told the cook 
that she intends to eat me in the soup to-morrow. This even- 
ing I am to have my head cut off. Now I am crowing at full 
pitch while I can." 

"Ah, but Red-Comb," said the Donkey, " you had better 
come away with us. We are going to Bremen. You can 


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find something better than death everywhere. iYou Have a 
good voice, and if we make music together, it must have some 
quality !" 

The Cock agreed to this plan, and all four went on together. 

They could not, however, reach the city of Bremen in one 
day, and in the evening they came to a forest where they meant 
to pass the night. The Donkey and the Hound laid themselves 
down under a large tree. The Cat and the Cock settled them- 
selves in the branches ; but the Cock flew right to the top, where 
he was most safe. 

Before he went to sleep, he looked round on all the four 
sides, and thought he saw in the distance a little spark burning. 
So he called out to his companions that there must be a house 
not far off, for he saw a light. 

The Donkey said, " If so, we had better get up and go on, 
for the shelter here is bad." 

The Hound thought that a few bones with some meat would 
do him good too ! 

They made their way to the place where the light was, and 
soon saw it shine brighter and grow larger, until they came to 
a Avell-lighted robber's house. The Donkey, as the biggest, 
went to the window and looked in. 

" What do you see, my Grey-Horse? " asked the Cock. 

" What do I see? " answered the Donkey; " a table covered 
with good things to eat and drink, and robbers sitting at it 
enjoying themselves." 

" That would be the sort of thing for us," said the Cock. 

" Yes, yes! ah, how I wish we were there! " said the Donkey. 

Then the animals took counsel together as to how they could 


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Srive away the robbers, and at last they thought of a plan. The 
Donkey was to place himself with his forefeet upon the win- 
dow-ledge, the Hound was to jump on the Donkey's back, the 
Cat was to climb upon the Hound, and lastly the Cock was to 
fly up and perch upon the head of the Cat. 

When this was done, at a given signal, they began to perform 
their music together. The Donkey brayed, the Hound barked, 
the Cat mewed, and the Coek crowed. Then they burst 
through the window into the room, so that the glass clattered! 

At this horrible din, the robbers sprang up, thinking no 
otherwise than that a ghost had come in, and fled in a great 
fright out into the forest. 

The four companions now sat down at the table, well content 
with what was left, and ate as if they were going to fast for a 

As soon as the four minstrels had done, they put out the 
light, and each sought for himself a sleeping-place according to 
his nature and to what suited him. The Donkey laid himself 
down upon some straw in the yard, the Hound behind the door, 
the Cat upon the hearth near the warm ashes, and the Cock 
perched himself upon a beam of the roof. Being tired with 
their long walk, they soon went to sleep. 

When it was past midnight, the robbers saw from afar that 
the light was no longer burning in their house, and all appeared 

The captain said, " We ought not to have let ourselves be 

frightened out of our wits; " and ordered one of them to go 

and examine the house. 

The messenger finding all still, went into the kitchen to light 


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a candle, and, taking the glistening fiery eyes of the Cat for 
live coals, he held a lucifer-match to them to light it. But the 
Cat did not understand the joke, and flew in his face, spitting 
and scratching. 

He was dreadfully frightened, and ran to the back door, but 
the Dog, who lay there, sprang up and bit his leg. 

Then, as he ran across the yard by the straw-heap, the Don- 
key gave him a smart kick with his hind foot. The Cock, too, 
who had been awakened by the noise, and had become lively, 
cried down from the beam: 

" Kicker-ee-ricker-ee-ree! ,J 

Then the robber ran back as fast as he could to his captain, 
and said, "Ah, there is a horrible Witch sitting in the house, 
who spat on me and scratched my face with her long claws. 
By the door stands a man with a knife, who stabbed me in the 
leg. In the yard there lies a black monster, who beat me with 
a wooden club. And above, upon the roof, sits the judge, who 
called out: 

" ' Bring tJte rogue here to me! ' 

so I got away as well as I could." 

After this the robbers did not trust themselves in the house 
again. But it suited the four musicians of Bremen so well that 
they did not care to leave it any more. 

And the mouth of him who last told this story, is still warm. 


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ONCE upon a time, a certain King was hunting in a 
great forest, and he chased a wild beast so eagerly that 
none of his attendants could follow him. When even- 
ing drew near, he stopped and looked around him, and saw 
that he had lost his way. He sought a way out, but could find 
none. Then he perceived an Old Woman with a head which 
nodded all the time, who came toward him, but she was a 

" Good Avoman," said he to her, " can you not show me the 
way through the forest? " 

" Oh, yes, Lord King," she answered, " that I certainly can, 
but on one condition, and if you do not fulfill that, you will 
never get out of the forest, and will die of hunger in it." 

" What kind of a condition is it? " asked the King. 

" I have a daughter," said the old woman, " who is as beau- 
tiful as any one in the world, and well deserves to be your wife. 
If you will make her your Queen, I will show you the way out 
of the forest." 

In the anguish of his heart the King consented, and the old 


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woman led him to her little hut, where her daughter was sitting 
by the fire. She received the King as if she had been expecting 
him. He saw that she was very beautiful, but still she did not 
please him, and he could not look at her without secret horror. 

After he had taken the maiden up on his horse, the old 
woman showed him the way, and the King reached his royal 
palace again, where the wedding was celebrated. 

The King had already been married once, and had by his 
first wife, seven children, six boys and a girl, whom he loved 
better than anything else in the world. As he now feared that 
the new Queen might not treat them well, and even do them 
some injury, he took them to a lonely castle which stood in the 
midst of a forest. It lay concealed, and the way was so diffi- 
cult to find, that he himself would not have found it at all, if a 
Wise Woman had not given him a ball of yarn with wonder- 
ful properties. When he threw it down before him, it unrolled 
itself and showed him his path. 

The King, however, went so frequently to visit his dear chil- 
dren, that the Queen noticed his absence. She was curious and 
wanted to know what he did when he was alone in the forest. 
She gave a great deal of money to his servants, and they be- 
trayed the secret to her, and told her likewise of the ball which 
alone could point out the way. 

And now she knew no rest until she had learnt where the 

King kept the ball of yarn. Then she made little shirts of 

white silk, and as she had learnt the art of witchcraft from her 

mother, she sewed a charm inside them. And one day, when 

the King had ridden forth to hunt, she took the little shirts and 

went into the forest, and the ball showed her the way. 


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THe children, who saw from a distance that some one was 
approaching, thought that their dear father was coining to 
them, and full of joy, ran to meet him. Then she threw one 
of the little shirts over each of them. And no sooner had the 
shirts touched their bodies than they were changed into Swans, 
and flew away over the forest. 

The Queen went home quite delighted, and thought she had 
got rid of all the children, but the girl had not run out with 
her brothers, and the Queen knew nothing about her. 

Next day, the King went to visit his children, but found no 
one but the little girl. 

" Where are your brothers? " asked the King. 

" Alas, dear Father," she answered, " they have gone away 
and left me alone! " and she told him that she had seen from 
her little window, how her brothers had flown away over the 
forest in the shape of Swans. And she showed him the feath- 
ers, which they had let fall in the courtyard, and which she had 
picked up. 

The King mourned, but he did not think that the Queen 
had done this wicked deed. And as he feared that the girl 
also would be stolen from him, he wanted to take her away. 
But she was afraid of the Queen, and entreated the King to 
let her stay just one night more in the forest-castle. 

The poor girl thought, " I can no longer remain here. I 
will go and seek my brothers." And when night came, she ran 
away, and went straight into the forest. 

She walked the whole night long, and next day also without 
stopping, until she could go no farther for weariness. Then 

she saw a forest-hut, and went into it, and found a room with 


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six little beds. She did not venture to get into any of them, 
but crept under one, and lay down on the hard ground, to pass 
the night there. Just before sunset she heard a rustling, and 
saw six Swans come flying in at the window. They alighted 
on the ground and blew at each other, and blew all the feathers 
off, and their swan's skins stripped off like a shirt. 

Then the maiden looked at them and recognized her brothers. 
She rejoiced and crept forth from beneath the bed. The broth- 
ers were not less delighted to see their little sister, but their 
joy was short. 

" Here can you not abide," they said to her. " This is a 
shelter for robbers. If they come home and find you, they 
will kill you." 

" But can you not protect me? " asked the little sister. 

" No," they replied, " only for one quarter of an hour each 
evening, can we lay aside our swan's skins and have our human 
form. After that, we are once more turned into Swans." 

The little sister wept, and said, " Can you not be set free? " 

"Alas, no," they answered, "the conditions are too hard! 
For six years you may neither speak nor laugh, and in that 
time you must sew together six little shirts of Star-Flowers for 
us. And if one single word falls from your lips, all your work 
will be lost." 

And when the brothers had said this, the quarter of an hour 
was over, and they flew out of the window again as Swans. 

The maiden, however, resolved to deliver her brothers, even 
if it should cost her her life. She left the hut, went into the 
midst of the forest, seated herself on a tree, and there passed 
the night. Next morning, she went out and gathered Star- 


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Flowers and began to sew. She could not speak to any one, 
and she had no wish to laugh. She sat there and looked at 
nothing but her work. 

When she had spent a long time there, it came to pass that 
the King of the country was hunting in the forest, and his 
huntsmen came to the tree on which the maiden was sitting. 

They called to her, and said, "Who are you?" But she 
made no answer. " Come down to us," said they. " We will 
not do you any harm." 

She only shook her head. As they pressed her further with 
questions, she threw her golden necklace down to them, and 
thought to content them with that. They, however, did not 
cease, and then she threw her girdle down to them, and as this 
also was to no use, her garters, and little by little everything 
which she had on that she could do without, until she had noth- 
ing left but her shift. The huntsmen, however, did not let 
themselves be turned aside bv that, but climbed the tree and 
fetched the maiden down and led her before the King. 

The King asked, " Who are you? What are you doing on 
the tree? " 

But she did not answer. He put the question in every lan- 
guage that he knew, but she remained as mute as a fish. As 
she was so beautiful, the King's heart was touched, and he was 
smitten with a great love for her. He put his mantle on her, 
took her before him on his horse, and carried her to his eastle. 

Then he caused her to be dressed in rich garments, and she 
shone in her beauty like bright daylight, but no word could be 
drawn from her. He placed her by his side at table, and her 

modest bearing and courtesy pleased him so much, that he said 5 


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" She is the one whom I wish to marry, and no other woman 
in the world.'' And a few days after, he united himself to her. 
The King, however, had a wicked mother, who was dissatis- 
fied with his marriage and spoke ill of the young Queen. 
" Who knows," said she, " from whence comes the creature, 
who can't speak? She is not worthy of a King! " 

After a year had passed, when the Queen brought her first 
child into the world, the old woman took it away from her and 
smeared her mouth with blood as she slept. Then she went to 
the King and accused the Queen of being a man-eater. The 
King would not believe it, and would not suffer any one to do 
her injury. She, however, sat continually sewing at the shirts, 
and cared for nothing else. 

The next time, when she again bore a beautiful boy, the false 
old woman used the same treachery, but the King could not 
bring himself to believe her words. He said, " She is too pious 
and good to do anything of that kind. If she were not dumb, 
and could defend herself, her innocence would come to light." 

But when the old woman stole away the newly-born child 
for the third time, and accused the Queen, who did not utter 
one word of defense, the King could do no otherwise than de- 
liver her over to justice; and she was sentenced to be burned. 

When the day came for the sentence to be executed, it was 
the last day of the six years during which she was not to speak 
or laugh, and she had delivered her dear brothers from the 
power of the enchantment. The six shirts were ready, only the 
left sleeve of the sixth was wanting. 

When, therefore, she was led to the stake, she laid the shirts 

on her arm. And when she stood on high and the fire was just 


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going to be lighted, she looked around and six Swans came fly- 
ing through the air toward her. Then she saw that her deliv- 
erance was near, and her heart leapt with joy. 

The Swans swept toward her and sank down so that she 
could throw the shirts over them. And as they were touched 
by them, their swan's skins fell off, and her brothers stood in 
their own form before her, vigorous and handsome. The 
youngest lacked only his left arm, and had in its place a swan's 
wing on his shoulder. 

They embraced and kissed each other, and the Queen went 
to the King, who was greatly moved, and she began to speak, 
and said, " Dearest Husband, now I may speak and declare to 
you that I am innocent, and falsely accused." And she told 
him of the treachery of the old woman who had taken away her 
three children, and hidden them. 

To the great joy of the King, they were brought back. And 
as a punishment, the wicked woman was bound to the stake and 
burned to ashes. 

But the King and the Queen, with their six brothers, lived 
many years in happiness and peace. 


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IN a certain mill, lived an old miller who had neither wife 
nor child. Three apprentices served under him. 

As they had been with him several years, he one day 
said to them, " I am old, and want to sit in the chimney-corner. 
Go out, and whichsoever of you brings me the best horse, to 
him will I give the mill. And in return for it, he shall take 
care of me till my death." 

The third of the boys was, however, the drudge, who was 
looked on as foolish by the others. They begrudged the mill 
to him., and afterward he would not have it. 

Then all three went out together, and when they came to the 
village, the two said to stupid Hans, " You may just as well 
stay here; as long as you live you will never get a horse." 

Hans, however, went with them, and when it was night they 

came to a cave in which they lay down to sleep. The two sharp 

ones waited until Hans had fallen asleep, then they got up, and 

went away leaving him where he was. They thought they had 

done a very clever thing, but it was certain to turn out ill for 



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When the sun arose, and Hans woke up, he was lying in a 
deep cavern. He looked around on every side and exclaimed, 
"Oh, alas! where ami?" 

Then he got up and clambered out of the eave, into the 
forest, thinking: 

" Here I am quite alone and deserted, how shall I obtain a 
horse now? " 

Whilst he was thus walking full of thought, he met a small 
Tabby-Cat which said quite kindly, " Hans, where are you 
going? " 

" Alas, you cannot help me." 

" I well know your desire," said the Cat. " You wish to 
have a beautiful horse. Come with me, and be my faithful 
servant for seven years, and then I will give you a horse more 
beautiful than any you have ever seen in your whole life." 

" Well, this is a wonderful Cat! " thought Hans, " but I am 
determined to see if she is telling the truth." 

So she took him with her into her enchanted castle, where 
there were nothing but cats who were her servants. They 
leapt nimbly upstairs and downstairs, and were merry and 

In the evening when they sat down to dinner, three of them 
had to make music. One played the bassoon, the other the 
fiddle, and the third put the trumpet to his lips, and blew out 
his cheeks as much as he possibly could. 

When they had dined, the table was carried away, and the 
Cat said, " Now, Hans, come and dance with mc." 

" No," said he, " I won't dance with a pussy eat. I have 

never done that yet," 


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" Then take him to bed/' said she to the cats. 

So one of them lighted him to his bedroom, one pulled his 
shoes off, one his stockings, and at last one of them blew out 
the candle. 

Next morning they returned and helped him out of bed, one 
put his stockings on for him, one tied his garters, one brought 
his shoes, one washed him, and one dried his face with her 

" That feels very soft! " said Hans. 

He, however, had to serve the Cat, and chop some wood 
every day. And to do that, he had an axe of silver, while the 
wedge and saw were of silver and the mallet of copper. So he 
chopped the wood small. 

He stayed there in the house and had good meat and drink, 
but never saw any one but the Tabby-Cat and her servants. 

Once she said to him, " Go and mow my meadow, and dry 
the grass," and gave him a scythe of silver, and a whetstone of 
gold, but bade him deliver them up again carefully. 

So Hans went thither, and did what he was bidden, and when 
he had finished the work, he carried the scythe, whetstone, and 
hay to the house, and asked if it was not yet time for her to 
give him his reward. 

" No," said the Cat, " you must first do something more for 
me of the same kind. There is timber of silver, carpenter's 
axe, square, and everything that is needful, all of silver, with 
these build me a small house." 

Then Hans built the small house, and said that he had now 
done everything, and still he had no horse. 

Nevertheless, the seven years had gone by with him as if 


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they were six months. The Cat asked him if he would like to 
see her horses? 

" Yes," said Hans. 

Then she opened the door of the small house. And when 
she had opened it, there stood twelve horses, — such horses, so 
bright and shining, that his heart rejoiced at the sight of them. 

And now she gave him to eat and to drink, and said, " Go 
home. I will not give you your horse to take away with you. 
But in three days' time, I will follow you and bring it." 

So Hans set out, and she showed him the way to the mill. 
She had, however, never once given him a new coat, and he had 
been obliged to keep on his dirty old smock-frock, which he had 
brought with him, and which during the seven years had every- 
where become too small for him. 

When he reached home, the two other apprentices were there 
again, and each of them certainly had brought a horse with him. 
But one of them was blind and the other lame. They asked 
Hans where his horse was. 

" It will follow me in three days' time." 

Then they laughed and said, " Indeed, stupid Hans! where 
will you get a horse? It will be a fine one! " 

Hans went into the parlor, but the miller said he should not 
sit down to table for he was so ragged and torn, that they would 
all be ashamed of him if any one came in. So they gave him a 
mouthful of food outside. 

At night, when they went to rest, the two others would not 

let him have a bed, and at last he was forced to creep into the 

goose-house, and lie down on a little hard straw. 

In iEe morning, when he awoke, the three days had passed, 


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and a coacK came with six horses and they shone so bright that 
it was delightful to see them ! — and a servant brought a seventh 
as well, which was for the poor miller's boy. 

And a magnificent Princess alighted from tlie coach, and 
went into the mill. And this Princess was the little Tabby-Cat 
whom poor Hans Had served for seven years. 

She asked the miller where the miller's boy and drudge 

Then the miller said, " We will not have him here in the mill, 
he is so ragged. He is lying in the goose-house." 

Then the King's Daughter said that they were to fetch him 

So they brought him; and he had to hold his little smock to- 
gether to cover himself. 

Her servants unpacked splendid garments, and washed him 
and dressed him. And when it was done, no King could have 
looked more handsome. 

Then the Princess desired to see the horses, which the other 
apprentices had brought home with them. One of them was 
blind and the other lame. So she ordered her servants to bring 
the seventh horse. 

When the miller saw it, he said such a horse as that had never 
before entered his yard. 

" And that is for the third miller's boy," said she. 

" Then he must have the mill," said the miller. 

But the Princess said that the horse was for himself, and that 

he was to keep his mill as well. Then she took her faithful 

Hans, set him in the coach, and drove away with him. 

They first drove to the little house, which he had built with 


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the silver tools. Behold! it was a great castle! Everything 
inside it was of silver and gold! 

Then she married him; and he was rich, so rich that he had 
enough for all the rest of his life. 

After this, let no one say that any one who is silly can never 
become a person of importance. 


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ONCE upon a time, there was a sweet little girl, who was 
loved by every one who looked at her, and most of all 
by her Grandmother. There was nothing that she 
would not have given the child ! 

Once she gave her a little cap of red velvet, which suited her 
so well that she would not wear anything else. So she was 
always called Little Red-Cap. 

One day, her Mother said to her, " Come, Little Red-Cap, 
here is a piece of cake and a bottle of wine. Take them to your 
Grandmother. She is ill and weak, and they will do her good. 
Set out before it gets hot. Walk nicely and quietly. Do not 
run off the path, or yoii may fall and break the bottle; then 
your Grandmother will get nothing! When you go into her 
room, don't forget to say ' Good morning, 5 and don't stop to 
peep into every corner, before you do it/' 

" I'll take great care,' 5 said Little Red-Cap to her Mother, 
and gave her hand on it. 

The Grandmother lived in the wood, half an hour's distance 

from the village, and just as Little Red-Cap entered the wood, 


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a Wolf met her. Red-Cap did not know what a wicked crea- 
ture he was, and was not at all afraid of him. 

" Good-day, Little Red-Cap/ 5 said he. 

" Thank you kindly, Wolf." 

" Whither away so early, Little Red-Cap? " 

" To my Grandmother's." 

" What have you got in your apron? " 

" Cake and wine. Yesterday was baking-day, so poor sick 
Grandmother is to have something good, to make her 

" Where does your Grandmother live, Little Red-Cap? " 

" A good quarter of an hour farther on in the wood. Her 
house stands under the three large oak-trees; the nut-trees are 
just below. You surely must know it," replied Little Red- 

The Wolf thought to himself, " What a tender young crea- 
ture! what a nice plump mouthful — she will be better to eat 
than the old woman, I must act craftily, so as to catch both." 

He walked for a short time by the side of Little Red-Cap, 
and then he said, " See, Little Red-Cap, how pretty the flowers 
are about here — why do you not look round? I believe, too, 
that you do not hear how sweetly the little birds are singing. 
You walk gravely along as if you were going to school, while 
everything else in the wood is merry." 

Little Red-Cap raised her eyes, and when she saw the sun- 
beams dancing here and there through the trees, and pretty 
flowers growing everywhere, she thought, " Suppose I take 
Grandmother a fresh nosegay. That would please her too. 

It is so early in the day that I shall still get there in good time." 


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And so she ran from the path into the wood to look for 
Bowers. And whenever she had picked one, she fancied that 
she saw a still prettier one farther on, and ran after it, and thus 
got deeper and deeper into the wood. 

Meanwhile, the Wolf ran straight to the Grandmother's 
house and knocked at the door. 

"Who is there?" 

" Little Red-Cap," replied the Wolf. " She is bringing 
cake and wine. Open the door." 

" Lift the latch," called out the Grandmother, " I am too 
weak, and cannot get up." 

The Wolf lifted the latch, the door flew open, and without 
saying a word he went straight to the Grandmother's bed, and 
devoured her. Then he put on her clothes, dressed himself in 
her cap, laid himself in bed, and drew the curtains. 

Little Red-Cap, however, had been running about picking 
flowers. When she had gathered so many that she could carry 
no more, she remembered her Grandmother, and set out on the 
way to her. 

She was surprised to find the cottage-door standing open. 
And when she went into the room, she had such a strange feel- 
ing, that she said to herself, " Oh dear! how uneasy I feel to- 
day, and at other times I like being with Grandmother so 

She called out, " Good morning," but received no answer. 

So she went to the bed and drew back the curtains. There lay 

her Grandmother with her cap pulled far over her face, and 

looking very strange. 

" Oh! Grandmother," she said, " what big ears you have! " 


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" TJie better to hear you with, my Child/' was the reply. 

" But, Grandmother, what big eyes you have!/' she said. 

" The better to see you with, my dear." 

" But, Grandmother, what large liands you'Rave! " 

" The better to hug you with." 

"Oh! but, Grandmother, what a terrible big mouth you 

" The better to eat you with! " And scarcely had the Wolf 
said this, than with one bound He was out of bed and swallowed 
up Red-Cap. 

When the Wolf had satisfied his appetite, fie lay down again 
in the bed, fell asleep and began to snore very loud. The 
huntsman was just passing the house, and thought to himself, 
" How the old woman is snoring! I must just see if she wants 

So he went into the room, and when he came to the bed, he 
saw the Wolf lying in it. " Do I find thee here, thou old 
sinner! " said he. " I have long sought thee! " 

Then just as he was going to fire at him, it occurred to him 
that the Wolf might have devoured the grandmother, and that 
she might still be saved. So he did not fire, but took a pair of 
scissors, and began to cut open the stomach of the sleeping 

When he had made two snips, he saw the little Red-Cap 
shining, and then he made two snips more, and the little girl 
sprang out, crying, "Ah, how frightened I have been! How 
dark it was inside the Wolf I " 

And after that the aged grandmother came out alive also, 

but scarcely able to breathe. 


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Red-Cap then quickly fetched great stones witH which they 
filled the Wolfs body. And when he awoke, he wanted to run 
away, but the stones were so heavy that he tumbled down at 
once, and fell dead. 

Then all three were delighted. The huntsman drew off the 
Wolfs skin and went home with it. The grandmother ate the 
cake and drank the wine which Red-Cap had brought, and 
grew strong again. 

But Red-Cap thought to herself, "As long as I live, I will 
never leave the path to run into the wood, when my mother has 
forbidden me to do so." 


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A KING had a daughter who was beautiful beyond all 
measure, but so proud and haughty withal that no 
suitor was good enough for her. She sent awaj r one 
after the other, and made fun of them as well. 

Once the King gave a great feast and invited thereto, from 
far and near, all the young men likely to marry. They were 
marshalled in a row according to their rank and standing. 
First came the Kings, then the Grand-dukes, then the Princes, 
the Earls, the Barons, and the gentry. 

Then the King's Daughter was led through the ranks, but 
to every one she had some objection to make. One was too fat, 
" The wine-cask," she said. Another was too tall, " Long and 
thin has little in." The third was too short, " Short and thick 
is never quick." The fourth was too pale, "As pale as death." 
The fifth too red, "A fighting-cock." The sixth was not 
straight enough, "A green log dried behind the stove." 

So she had something to say against every one. But she 
made herself especially merry over a good King, who stood 

quite high up in the row, and whose chin had grown a little 


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crooked. " Well," she cried and laughed, " he has a chin like 
a thrush's beak! " and from that time he got the name of King 

But the old King, when he saw that his daughter did nothing 
but mock people, and despised all the suitors who were gath- 
ered there, was very angry, and swore that she should have for 
her husband the very first beggar that came to his doors. 

A few days afterward, a fiddler came and sang beneath the 
windows, trying to earn a small alms. When the King heard 
him, he said, " Let him come up." 

So the fiddler came up, in his dirty, ragged clothes, and sang 
before the King and his daughter. When he had ended he 
asked for a trifling gift. 

The King said, " Your song has pleased me so well that I 
will give you my daughter there, to wife." 

The King's Daughter shuddered, but the King said, " I have 
taken an oath to give you to the very first beggar man, and I 
will keep it," 

All she could say was in vain; the priest was brought, and 
she had to let herself be wedded to the fiddler on the spot. 

When that was done the King said, " Now it is not proper 
for you, a beggar woman, to stay any longer in my palace, you 
may go away with your husband." 

The beggar man led her out by the hand, and she was 
obliged to go away on foot with him. When they came to a 
large forest she asked, " To whom does that beautiful forest 

" It belongs to King Thrushbeard. If you had taken him, 

it would have been yours." 


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"Ah, unhappy girl that I am! If I had but taken King 

Afterward, they came to a meadow, and she asked again, 
" To whom does this beautiful green meadow belong? " 

" It belongs to King Thrushbeard. If you had taken him, 
it would have been yours." 

"Ah, unhappy girl that I am! If I had but taken King 

Then they came to a large town, and she asked again, " To 
whom does this fine large town belong? " 

" It belongs to King Thrushbeard. If you had taken him, 
it would have been yours." 

"Ah, unhappy girl thai I am! If I had but taken King 

" It does not please me," said the fiddler, " to hear you 
always wishing for another husband. Am I not good enough 
for you? " 

At last they came to a very little hut, and she said, " Oh, 
goodness! what a small house! To whom does this miserable, 
mean hovel belong?" 

The fiddler answered, " That is my house and yours, where 
we shall live together." 

She had to stoop in order to go in at the low door. " Where 
are the servants? " said the King's Daughter. 

" What servants? " answered the beggar man, " You must 
do what you wish to have done. Just make a fire at once, and 
set on water to cook my supper. I am quite tired." 

But the King's Daughter knew nothing about lighting fires 

or cooking, and the beggar man had to lend a hand himself to 


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get anything fairly done. When they had finished their scanty 
meal they went to bed; but he forced her to get up quite early 
in the morning in order to look after the house. 

For a few days, they lived in this way as well as might be, 
and ate up all the food in the house. 

Then the man said, " Wife, we cannot go on any longer eat- 
ing and drinking here and earning nothing. .You must weave 

He went out, cut some willows, and brought them home. 
Then she began to weave, but the tough willows wounded her 
delicate hands, 

" I see that this will not do," said the man; " you had better 
spin; perhaps you can do that." 

She sat down and tried to spin, but the hard thread soon cut 
her soft fingers so that the blood ran down. 

" See," said the man, " you are fit for no sort of work. I 
have made a bad bargain with you. Now, I will try to earn a 
living by selling pots and earthenware. You must sit in the 
market-place and sell the ware." 

"Alas," thought she, " if any of the people from my father's 
kingdom come to the market and see me sitting there, selling, 
how they will mock me! " But it was of no use, she had to 
yield unless she chose to die of hunger. 

For the first time, she succeeded well, for the people were 

glad to buy the woman's wares because she was good-looking, 

and they paid her what she asked. Many eren gave her the 

money and left the pots with her as well. So they lived on 

what she had earned as long as it lasted. 

Then the husband bought a lot of new crockery. With this 


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she sat down at the corner of the market-place, and set it 
around her ready for sale. But suddenly there came a drunken 
soldier galloping along, and he rode right amongst the pots, so 
that they were all broken into a thousand bifs. 

She began to weep, and did not know what to do for fear. 
"Alas! what will happen to me?" cried she; "what will my 
husband say to this? " She ran home and told him of the mis- 

" Who would seat herself at a corner of the market-place 
with crockery?" said the man. "Leave off crying. I see 
very well that you cannot do ordinary work, so I have been to 
our King's palace and have asked whether they cannot find a 
place for a kitchen-maid. They have promised me to take you. 
In that way, you will get your food for nothing." 

The King's Daughter was now a kitchen-maid, and had to 
be at the cook's beck and call, and do the dirtiest work. In 
each of her pockets she fastened a little jar, in which she took 
home her share of the leavings, and upon this they lived. 

It happened that the wedding of the King's eldest son was 
to be celebrated. So the poor woman went up and placed her- 
self by the door of the hall to look on. When all the candles 
were lit, and people, each more beautiful than the other, en- 
tered, and all was full of pomp and splendor, she thought of 
her lot with a sad heart, and cursed the pride and haughtiness 
which had humbled her, and brought her to so great poverty. 

The smell of the delieious dishes which were being taken in 

and out readied her, and now and then the servants threw her 

a few morsels. These she put in her jars to take home. 

All at once, the King's Son entered, clothed in velvet and 


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silk, with gold chains about his neck. And when he saw the 
beautiful woman standing by the door he seized her by the 
hand, and would have danced with her. But she refused and 
shrank back with fear, for she saw that it was King Thrush- 
beard, her suitor whom she had driven away with scorn. 

Her struggles were of no use; he drew her into the hall. 
But the string by which her pockets were fastened, broke, the 
pots fell down, the soup ran out, and the scraps were scattered 
all around. And when the people saw it, there arose laughter 
and derision, and she was so ashamed that she would rather 
have been a thousand fathoms below ground. 

She sprang to the door and would have run away, but on the 
stairs a man caught her and brought her back. And when she 
looked at him it was King Thrushbeard! 

He said to her kindly, " Do not be afraid, I and the fiddler 
who has been living with you in that wretched hovel are one. 
For love of you I disguised myself so. And I, also, was the 
soldier who rode through your crockery. This was all done to 
humble your proud spirit, and to punish you for the insolence 
with which you mocked me." 

Then she wept bitterly and said, " I have done great wrong, 
and am not worthy to be your wife." 

But he said, " Be comforted. The evil days are past. Now 
we will celebrate our wedding." 

Then the maids-in-waiting came, and put the most splendid 

clothing on her. Her father and his whole Court arrived, and 

wished her happiness in her marriage to King Thrushbeard. 

And the joy now began in earnest. I wish you and I had been 

there tool 


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THERE was once a poor man and a poor woman who 
had nothing but a little cottage. They earned their 
bread by fishing, and always lived from hand to mouth. 

But it came to pass one day, when the man was sitting by 
the waterside and casting his net, that he drew out a fish en- 
tirely of gold. 

As he was looking at the fish, full of astonishment, it began 
to speak and said, " Hark you, Fisherman, if you will throw 
me back again into the water, I will change your little hut into 
a splendid castle." 

Then the fisherman answered, " Of what use is a castle to 
me, if I have nothing to eat? " 

The Gold Fish continued, " That shall be taken care of. 
There will be a cupboard in the castle in which, when you open 
it, shall be dishes of the most delicate meats, and as many of 
them as you may desire/' 

" If that be true," said the man, " then I ean well do you a 

" Yes," said the Fish, " there is, however, the condition that 


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you shall tell no one in the world, whosoever he may be, whence 
your good luck has come. If you speak but one single word, 
all will be over." 

Then the man threw the wonderful Fish back again into the 
water, and went home. 

Where his hovel had formerly stood, now stood a great 
castle. He opened wide his eyes, entered, and saw his wife 
dressed in beautiful clothes, sitting in a splendid room. 

She was quite delighted, and said, " Husband, how has all 
this come to pass? It suits me very well." 

" Yes," said the man, " it suits me too. But I am frightfully 
hungry, just give me something to eat." 

Said the wife, " But I have got nothing and don't know 
where to find anything in this new house." 

" There is no need of your knowing," said the man, " for I 
see yonder a great cupboard, just unlock it." 

When she opened it, lo! there stood cakes, meat, fruit, 

Then the woman cried joyfully, " What more can you want, 
my dear? " and they sat down, and ate and drank together. 

When they had had enough, the woman said, " But, Hus- 
band, whence come all these riches? " 

"Alas," answered he, " do not question me about it, for I 
dare not tell you anything. If I disclose it to any one, then 
all our good fortune will fly." 

" Very good," said she, " if I am not to know anything, then 
I do not want to know anything." 

However, she was not in earnest. She never rested day or 

night, and she goaded her husband until in his impatience he 


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revealed that all was owing to a wonderful Gold Fish which he 
had caught, and to which in return he had given its liberty. 

And as soon as the secret was out, the splendid castle with 
the cupboard immediately disappeared. They were once more 
in the old fisherman's hut, and the man was obliged to follow his 
former trade and fish. 

But fortune would so have it, that he once more drew out the 
Gold Fish. " Listen," said the Fish, " if you will throw me 
back into the water again, I will once more give you the castle 
with the cupboard full of roast and boiled meats. Only be 
firm; for your life's sake don't reveal from whom you have it, 
or you will lose it all again! " 

" I will take good care," answered the fisherman, and threw 
the fish back into the water. 

Now at home, everything was once more in its former mag- 
nificence. The wife was overjoyed at their good fortune. But 
curiosity left her no peace, so that after a couple of days she 
began to ask again how it had come to pass, and how he had 
managed to secure it. 

The man kept silence for a short time, but at last she made 
him so angry that he broke out and betrayed the secret. In an 
instant the castle disappeared, and they were back again in their 
old hut. 

" Now you have got what you want," said he; " and we can 
gnaw at a bare bone again." 

" All," said the woman, " I had rather have no riches; if I am 
not to know from whom they come, then I have no peace." 

The man went back to fisK, and after a while he chanced to 

draw out the Gold Fish for a third time. 


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" Listen/' said the Fish, " I see very well that I am fated to 
fall into your hands. Take me home and cut me into six 
pieces. Give your wife two of them to eat, two to your horse, 
and bury two of them in the ground. Then they will bring you 
a blessing/ 5 

The fisherman took the Fish home with him, and did as it 
had bidden him. 

It came to pass that from the two pieces that were buried in 
the ground, two Golden Lilies sprang up; that the horse had 
two Golden Foals; and the fisherman's wife bore two children 
who were made entirely of gold. 

The children grew up, became tall and handsome, and the 
lilies and horses grew likewise. 

Then the lads said, " Father, we want to mount our Golden 
Steeds and travel out in the world/* 

But he answered sorrowfully, " How shall I bear it, if you 
go away and I know not how it fares with you? " 

Then they said, " The two Golden Lilies remain here. By 
them you may see how it is with us. If they are fresh, then we 
are in health. If they are withered, we are ill. If they perish, 
then we are dead/' 

So they rode forth and came to an inn, in which were many 
people. They perceived the Gold-Children and began to 
laugh, and jeer. 

When one of them heard the mocking he felt ashamed and 

would not go out into the world, but turned back and went 

home again to his father. But the other rode forward and 

reached a great forest. 

As he was about to enter it, the people said, " It is not safe 


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for you to ride through; the wood is full of robbers, who would 
treat you badly. You will fare ill. When they see that you 
are all of gold and your horse likewise, they will assuredly kill 

But he would not allow himself to be frightened, and said, 
" I must and will ride through it." 

Then he took bear-skins and covered himself and his horse 
with them, so that the gold was not seen, and rode fearlessly 
into the forest. When he had ridden onward a little, he 
heard a rustling in the bushes, and heard voices speaking to- 

From one side came cries of, " There is one I " but from the 
other, " Let him go! 'tis an idle fellow, as poor and bare as a 
church-mouse. What should we gain from him? " 

So the Gold-Child rode joyfully through the forest, and no 
evil befell him. 

One day he entered a village wherein he saw a maiden, who 
was so beautiful that he did not believe that any more beautiful 
than she existed in the world. 

And as such a mighty love took possession of him, he went 
up to her and said, " I love you with my whole heart. Will 
you be my wife? " 

He, too, pleased the maiden so much that she agreed and 
said, " Yes, I will be your wife, and be true to you your whole 
life long." 

They were married. Then just as they were in the greatest 
happiness, home came the father of the Bride. When he saw 
that his daughter's wedding was being celebrated, he was aston- 
ished, and said, " Where is the Bridegroom? " 


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They showed him the Gold-Child A who, however, still wore 
his bear-skins. 

Then the father said wrathfully, "A vagabond sKall never 
have my daughter! " and was about to kill him. 

Then the Bride begged as hard as she could, and said, " He 
is my husband, and I love him with all my heart! " until at last 
he allowed himself to be appeased. 

Nevertheless the idea never left his thoughts, so that next 
morning he rose early, wishing to see whether his daughter's 
husband was a common ragged beggar. But when he peeped 
in, he saw a magnificent golden man in the bed, and the cast-off 
bear-skins lying on the ground. 

Then he went back, and thought, " Wliat a good thing it was 
that I restrained my anger! I should have committed a great 


But the Gold-Child dreamed that he rode out to the chase of 
a splendid stag, and when he awoke in the morning, he said to 
liis wife, " I must go out hunting." 

She was uneasy, and begged him to stay tKere, and said, 
" You might easily meet with a great misfortune," 

But he answered, " I must and will go." 

Thereupon he got up, and rode forth into the forest. It was 
not long before a fine stag crossed his path exactly according to 
his dream. He aimed and was about to shoot it, when the stag 
ran away. He gave chase over hedges and ditches for the 
whole day without feeling tired. In the evening the stag van- 
ished from his sight, and when the Gold-Child looked round 
him, he was standing before a little house, wherein was a 



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He knocked, and a little old woman came out and asked, 
" What are you doing so late in the midst of the great forest? " 

" Have you not seen a stag? " 

" Yes," answered she, " I know the stag well," and there- 
upon a little dog which had come out of the house with her, 
barked at the man violently. 

" Will you be silent, you odious toad," said he, " or I will 
shoot you dead." 

Then the Witch cried out in a passion, " What! will you slay 
my little dog? " and immediately she transformed him, so that 
he lay like a stone. 

Meanwhile his Bride awaited him in vain, and thought, 
" That which I so greatly dreaded, which lay so heavily on my 
heart, has come upon him! " 

But at home, the other brother was standing by the Gold- 
Lilies, when one of them suddenly drooped. "Alas! " said he, 
"my brother has met with some great misfortune! I must 
away to see if I can possibly rescue him." 

Then he mounted his Golden Horse, and rode forth and 
entered the great forest, where his brother lay turned to stone. 
The old Witch came out of her house and called him, wishing 
to entrap him also. 

He did not go near her, but said, " I will shoot you, if you 
do not bring my brother to life again/' 

She touched the stone, though very unwillingly, with her 
forefinger. Then he was immediately restored to his human 

The two Gold-Children rejoiced, when they saw each other 

again. They kissed and caressed each other, and rode away 


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together out of the forest, the one home to his Bride, the other 
to his father. 

The father then said, " I knew well that you had rescued 
your brother, for the Golden Lily suddenly rose up and blos- 
somed out again." 

Then they lived happily, and all prospered with them until 
their death. 


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ONCE upon a time, in the middle of winter, when the 
flakes of snow were falling like feathers from the sky, 
a Queen sat at a window sewing, and the frame of the 
window was made of black ebony. 

And whilst she was sewing and looking out of the windoAv at 
the snow, she pricked her finger with the needle, and three 
drops of blood fell upon the snow. And the red looked pretty 
upon the white snow, and she thought to herself, " Would that 
I had a child as white as snow, as red as blood, and as black as 
the wood of the window-frame." 

Soon after that she had a little daughter, who was as white 
as snow, and as red as blood, and her hair was as black as ebony. 
She was therefore called little Snow- White. And when the 
child was born, the Queen died. 

After a year had passed the King took to himself another 

wife. She was a beautiful woman, but proud and haughty, 

and she could not bear that any one else should surpass her in 

beauty. She had a wonderful looking-glass, and when she 

stood in front of it and looked at herself in it, and said; 


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"Looking-Glass, Looking-Glass, on the wall^ 
Who in this land is the fairest of all? " 

itKe LooFing-GIass answered: 

"Thou, O Queen, art the fairest of all! " 

* TEen sKe was satisfied^ for she knew that the Looking-Glass 
spoke the truth. 

But little Snow- White was growing up, and grew more and 
more beautiful. When she was seven years old she was as 
beautiful as the day, and more beautiful than the Queen her- 
self. And once when the Queen asked her Looking-Glass: 

"Looking-Glass, Looking-Glass, on the wall, 
Who in this land is the fairest of all? " 

it answered: 

"Thou art fairer than all who are here, Lady Queens 
But more beautiful still is Snow-White, I ween." 

Then the Queen was shocked, and turned yellow and green 
with envy. From that hour, whenever she looked at little 
Snow-White, her heart heaved in her breast, she hated the 
maiden so much. 

And envy and pride grew higher and higher in her heart like 
a weed, so that she had no peace day or night. She called a 
huntsman, and said, " Take the child away into the forest. I 
will no longer have her in my sight. Kill her." 

The huntsman obeyed, and took her away. But when he 
had drawn his knife, and was about to pierce little Snow- 
White's innocent heart, she began to weep, and said, "Ah, dear 
Huntsman, leave me my life! I will run away into the wild 

forest, and never come home again." 


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r And as she was so beautiful, the huntsman had pity on her 
and said, "Run away, then, you poor child/* "The wild 
beasts will soon have devoured you," thought he, and yet it 
seemed as if a stone had been rolled from his heart since it was 
no longer needful for him to kill her. 

But now, the poor child was all alone in the great forest, and 
so terrified that she looked at every leaf of every tree, and did 
not know what to do. Then she began to run, and ran over 
sharp stones and through thorns, and the wild beasts ran past 
her, but did her no harm. 

She ran as long as her feet would go, until it was almost 
evening. Then she saw a little cottage and went into it to rest 
herself. Everything in the cottage was small, but neater and 
cleaner than can be told. There was a table on which was a 
white cover, and seven little plates, and on each plate a little 
spoon. Moreover, there were seven little knives and forks, 
and seven little mugs. Against the wall stood seven little beds 
side by side, and covered with snow-white counterpanes. 

I ittle Snow-White was so hungry and thirsty, that she ate 
some vegetables and bread from each plate and drank a drop 
of wine out of each mug, for she did not wish to take all from 
one only. Then, as she was so tired, she laid herself down on 
one of the little beds, but none of them suited her. One was 
too long, another too short, but at last she found that the sev- 
enth one was right, so she remained in it, said a prayer and 
went to sleep. 

When it was quite dark the owners of the cottage came back. 
They were seven Dwarfs who dug and delved in the mountains 
for ore. They lit their seven candles, and, as it was now light 


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within the cottage, they saw that some one had been there, for 
everything was not in the same order in which they had left it. 
The first said, "Who has been sitting on my chair?" 
The second, " Who has been eating off my plate? " 
The third, " Who has been taking some of my bread? " 
The fourth, " Who has been eating my vegetables? " 
The fifth, " Who has been using my fork? " 
The sixth, " Who has been cutting with my knife? " 
The seventh, " Who has been drinking out of my mug? " 
Then the first looked round and saw that there was a little 
hole on his bed, and he said, " Who has been getting into my 

The others came up and each called out, " Somebody has 
been lying in my bed too." 

But the seventh when he looked at his bed saw little Snow- 
White, who was lying fast asleep therein. And he called the 
others, who came running up, and they cried out with astonish- 
ment, and brought their seven little candles and let the light 
fall on little Snow- White. 

" Oh, oh! " cried they, " what a lovely child! " and they were 
so glad that they did not wake her up, but let her sleep on in 
the bed. And the seventh Dwarf slept with his companions, 
one hour with each, and so got through the night. 

The next morning, little Snow-White awoke, and was 
frightened when she saw the seven Dwarfs. But they were 
friendly and asked her what her name was. 

" My name is little Snow-White," she answered. 

" How have you come to our house? " said the Dwarfs. 

Then she told them that the wicked Queen had wished to 


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have her killed, but that the huntsman had spared her life, and 
that she had run for the whole day, until at last she had found 
their dwelling. 

The Dwarfs said, " If you will take care of our house, cook, 
make the beds, wash, sew, and knit, and if you will keep every- 
thing neat and elean, you may stay with us and you shall want 
for nothing." 

" Yes," said little Snow-White, " with all my heart," and 
she stayed with them. 

She kept the house in order for them. In the mornings they 
went to the mountains and looked for copper and gold, in the 
evenings they came back, and then their supper had to be 

The maiden was alone the whole day, so the good Dwarfs 
warned her and said, t% Beware of the Queen, she will soon 
know that you are here. Be sure to let no one come in." 

But the Queen, believing that little Snow-White was dead, 
could not but think that she herself was again the first and most 
beautiful of all. She went to her Looking-Glass, and said: 

44 Looking-Glass, Looking-Glass, on the wall, 
Who in this land is the fairest of allf >y 

and the Glass answered: 

"Oh, Queen, thou art fairest of all I see, 
Bui over the hills, where the Seven Dwarfs dwell, 
Little Snow-White is alive and well, 
And none is so fair as she." 

Then she was astounded, for she knew that the Looking- 
Glass never spoke falsely, and she knew that the huntsman had 

betrayed her, for that little Snow-White was still alive. 


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And so sHe thought and thought again how she might kill 
her, for so long as she herself was not the fairest in the whole 
land, envy let her have no rest. And when she had at last 
thought of something to do, she painted her face, and dressed 
herself like an old pedler-woman, and no one could have known 

In this disguise she went over the Seven Mountains to the 
Seven Dwarfs, and knocked at the door and cried, " Pretty 
things to sell, very cheap, very cheap! " 

Little Snow-White looked out at the window, and called, 
" Good-day, my dear woman, what have you to sell? " 

" Good things, pretty things," she answered; " stay-laces of 
all colors," and she pulled out one which was woven of bright- 
colored silk. 

" I may let the worthy old woman in," thought little Snow- 
White, and she unbolted the door and bought the pretty laces. 

" Child," said the old woman, " what a fright you look. 
Come, I will lace you properly for once." 

Little Snow-White had no suspicion, but stood before her, 
and let herself be lacecl with the new laces. But the old woman 
laced so quickly and laced so tightly that little Snow-White 
lost her breath and fell down as if dead. 

" Now I am the most beautiful," said the Queen to herself, 
and ran away. 

Not long afterward, in the evening, the Seven Dwarfs came 

home. But how shocked they were when they saw their dear 

little Snow-White lying on the ground, and that she neither 

stirred nor moved, and seemed to be dead. They lifted her up, 

and, as they saw that she was laced too tightly, they cut the 


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laces. Then she began to breathe a little, and after a while 
came to life again. 

When the Dwarfs heard what Had happened, they said, 
" The old pedler-woman was no one else than the wicked 
Queen. Take care and let no one come in when we are not 
with you." 

But the wicked woman, when she had reached home, went in 
front of the Glass and asked: 

" Looking-Glass, Looking-Glass, on the wall, 
Who in this land is the fairest of all? n 

and it answered as before: 

"Oh, Queen, thou art fairest of all I see, 
But over the hills, where the Seven Dwarfs dwell, 
Little Snow-White is ative and well, 
And none is so fair as she." 

When she heard that, all her blood rushed to her heart with 
fear, for she saw plainly that little Snow- White was again 
alive. " But now," she said, " I will think of something that 
shall put an end to you," and by the help of witchcraft, which 
she understood, she made a poisonous comb. 

Then she disguised herself, and took the shape of another 
old woman. So she went over the Seven Mountains to the 
Seven Dwarfs, knocked at the door, and cried, " Good things 
to sell, cheap, cheap! " 

Little Snow-White looked out, and said, " Go away. I can- 
not let any one come in." 

" I suppose you may look," said the old woman, and pulled 
the poisonous comb out and held it up. 

It pleased the maiden so well that she let herself be beguiled, 


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and opened the door. When they had made a bargain, the old 
woman said, " Now I will comb you properly for once." 

Poor little Snow- White had no suspicion, and let the Old 
Woman do as she pleased. But hardly had she put the comb 
in her hair, then the poison in it took effect, and the maiden fell 
down senseless. 

" >You paragon of beauty," said the wicked woman, " you 
are done for now! " and she went away. 

But fortunately it was almost evening, and the Seven 
Dwarfs came home. When they saw little Snow-White lying 
as if dead upon the ground, they at once suspected the Queen. 
They looked and found the poisoned comb. Scarcely had they 
taken it out, when little Snow-White came to herself, and told 
them what had happened. Then they warned her once more 
to be upon her guard, and to open the door to no one. 

The Queen, at home, went in front of the Glass and said: 

"Looking-Glass, Looking -Glass, on the wall, 
Who in this land is the fairest of all? " 

then it answered as before: 

"Oh, Queen, thou art fairest of all 1 see, 
But over tlie hills, where the Seven Dwarfs diveU, 
Little Snow-White is alive and tvell. 
And none is so fair as she," 

When she heard the Glass speak thus, she trembled and 
shook with rage. " Little Snow-White shall die," she cried, 
" even if it costs me my life! " 

Thereupon she went into a secret, lonely room, where no 

one ever came, and there she made a very poisonous apple. 

Outside it looked pretty, white with a red cheek, so that every 


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one who saw it longed for it. But whoever ate a piece of it 
must surely die. 

When the apple was ready, she painted her face, and dressed 
herself as a countrywoman, and so she went over the Seven 
Mountains to the Seven Dwarfs. She knocked at the door. 
Little Snow-White put her head out of the window and said, 
" I cannot let any one in. The Seven Dwarfs have forbidden 

" It is all the same to me/' answered the woman, " I shall 
soon get rid of my apples. There, I will give you one." 

" No," said little Snow-White, " I dare not take anything." 

" Are you afraid of poison? " said the old woman. " Look, 
I will eut the apple in two pieces. You eat the red cheek, and 
I will eat the white." 

The apple was so cunningly made that only the red cheek 
was poisoned. Little Snow-White longed for the fine apple, 
and when she saw that the woman ate part of it, she could re- 
sist no longer, and stretched out her hand and took the poison- 
ous half. But hardly had she a bit of it in her mouth, than 
she fell down dead. 

Then the Queen looked at her with a dreadful look, and 
laughed aloud, and said, " White as snow, red as blood, black 
as ebony-wood! This time the Dwarfs cannot wake you up 

And when she asked of the Looking-Glass at home: 

" Looking-Qlass, Looking-Glass, on the wall, 
Who in this land is the fairest of all? " 

it answered at last: 

"Oh, Queen, in this land thou art fairest of dU" 

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Then her envious heart had rest, so far as an envious heart can 
have rest* 

The Dwarfs, when they came home in the evening, found 
little Snow-White lying upon the ground. She breathed no 
longer and was dead. They lifted her up, looked to see 
whether they could find anything poisonous, unlaced her, 
combed her hair, washed her with water and wine, but it was 
all of no use. The poor child was dead, and remained dead. 
They laid her upon a bier, and all seven of them sat round it 
and wept for her, and wept three days long. 

Then they were going to bury her, but she still looked as if 
she was living, and still had her pretty red cheeks. They said, 
" We could not bury her in the dark ground," and they had a 
transparent coffin of glass made, so that she might be seen from 
all sides. They laid her in it, and wrote her name upon it in 
golden letters, and that she was a King's Daughter. 

Then they put the coffin out upon the mountain, and one of 
them always stayed by it to watch it. And birds came too, 
and wept for little Snow- White; first an owl, then a raven, and 
last a dove. 

And now little Snow-White lay a long, long time in the 
coffin. She did not change, but looked as if she were asleep; 
for she was as white as snow, as red as blood, and her hair was 
as black as ebony. 

It happened, however, that a King's Son came into the 
forest, and went to the Dwarfs' house to spend the night. He 
saw the coffin on the mountain, and the beautiful little Snow- 
White within it, and read what was written upon it in golden 



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Then he said to the Dwarfs, " Let me have the coffin. I will 
give you whatever you want for it," 

But the Dwarfs answered, " We will not part with it for all 
the gold in the world." 

Then he said, " Let me have it as a gift, for I cannot live 
without seeing little Snow-Wbite, I will honor and prize her 
as my dearest possession." As he spoke in this way the good 
Dwarfs took pity upon him, and gave him the coffin. 

And now the King's Son had it carried away by his servants 
on their shoulders. And it happened, that they stumbled over 
a tree-stump, and with the shock the poisonous piece of apple, 
which little Snow- White had bitten off, came out of her throat. 
And before long she opened her eyes, lifted up the lid of the 
coffin, sat up, and was once more alive, 

" Oh, where am I? " she cried. 

The King's Son, full of joy, said, " You are with me," and 
told her what had happened, and said, " I love you more than 
everything in the world. Come with me to my father's palace, 
you shall be my wife." 

And little Snow-White was willing, and went with him, and 

their wedding was held with great show and splendor. But the 

wicked Queen was also bidden to the feast. When she had 

arrayed herself in beautiful clothes, she went before the Look- 

ing-Glass, and said: 

" Looking-Glass, Looking-Glass, on the wall, 
Who in this land is the fairest of allV 

the Glass answered: 

"Oh, Queen, of all here the fairest art thou, 
But the young Queen is fairer ly far, I trow! " 

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Then the wicked woman uttered a curse, and was so 
wretched, so utterly wretched, that she knew not what to do. 
At first she would not go to the wedding at all, but she had no 
peace, and must go to see the young Queen. 

And when she went in she knew little Snow-White. And 
she stood still with rage and fear, and could not stir. But iron 
slippers had already been put upon the fire, and they were 
brought in with tongs, and set before her. Then she was forced 
to put on the red-hot shoes, and dance until she dropped down 


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ONCE there was a miller who was poor, but who had a 
beautiful daughter. Now it happened that he had to 
speak to the King, and in order to make himself ap- 
pear important he said to him, " I have a daughter who can 
spin straw into gold." 

The King said to the miller, " That is an art which pleases 
me well. If your daughter is as clever as you say, bring her 
to-morrow to my palace, and I will try what she can do." 

And when the girl was brought to him, he took her into a 
room which was quite full of straw, gave her a spinning-wheel 
and a reel, and said, " Now set to work. If by to-morrow 
morning early, you have not spun this straw into gold, you 
must die." 

Thereupon he himself locked up the room, and left her in it 
alone. So there sat the poor miller's daughter, and for her life 
could not tell what to do. She had no idea how straw could 
be spun into gold; and she grew more and more miserable, 
until at last she began to weep. 

But all at once the door opened, and in came a Little Man, 


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and said, " Good evening. Mistress Miller. Why are you cry- 
ing so? " 

" Alas! " answered the girl, " I have to spin straw into gold, 
and I do not know how to do it." 

" What will you give me," said the Little Man, ** if I do \i 
for you?" 

" My necklace," said the girl. 

The Little Man took the necklace, seated himself in front of 
the wheel, and whirr, whirr, whirr, three turns, and the reel was 
full. Then he put another on, and whirr, whirr, whirr, three 
times round, and the second was full too.. And so it went on 
till the morning, when all the straw was spun, and all the reels 
were full of gold. 

By daybreak, the King was there, and when he saw the gold, 
he was astonished and delighted, but his heart became only 
more greedy. He had the miller's daughter taken into another 
room full of straw, which was much larger, and commanded 
her to spin that also in one night if she valued her life. 

The girl knew not how to help herself, and was crying, when 
the door again opened, and the Little Man appeared, and said, 
" What will you give me if I spin the straw into gold for you? " 

" The ring on my finger," answered the girl. 

The Little Man took the ring, again began to turn the 
wheel, and, by morning, had spun all the straw into glittering 

The King rejoiced beyond measure at the sight, but still he 
had not gold enough. He had the miller's daughter taken into 
a still larger room full of straw, and said, " You must spin this, 

too, in the course of this night. But if you succeed, you shall 


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be my wife." " Even if she be a miller's daughter," thought 
he, " I could not find a richer wife in the whole world." 

When the girl was alone the Little Man came again for the 
third time, and said, " What will you give me if I spin the 
straw for you this time also? " 

" I have nothing left that I could give," answered the girl. 

" Then promise me, if you should become Queen, your first 

" Who knows whether that will ever happen? " thought the 
miller's daughter. And, not knowing how else to help herself 
in this difficulty, she promised the Little Man what he wanted. 
And for that he once more span the straw into gold. 

And when the King came in the morning, and found all as 
he had wished, he took her in marriage. And the pretty mill- 
er's daughter became a Queen. 

A year after, she had a beautiful child, and she never gave a 
thought to the Little Man. But suddenly he came into her 
room, and said, " Now give me what you promised." 

The Queen was horror-struck, and offered the Little Man all 
the riches of the kingdom if he would leave her the child. 

But the Little Man said, " No, something that is alive, is 
dearer to me than all the treasures in the world." 

Then the Queen began to weep and cry, so that the Little 
Man pitied her. " I will give you three days' time," said he; 
" if by that time you find out my name, then you shall keep 
your child." 

So the Queen thought the whole night of all the names that 

she had ever heard, and she sent a messenger over the country 

to inquire, far and wide, for any other names there might be. 


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When the Little Man came the next day, she began with 
Caspar, Melchior, Balthazar, and said all the names she knew, 
one after another. But to every one the Little Man said, 
" That is not my name." 

On the second day, she had inquiries made in the neighbor- 
hood as to the names of the people there. And she repeated 
to the Little Man the most uncommon and curious, " Perhaps 
your name is Shortribs, or Sheepshanks, or Laceleg? " but he 
always answered, " That is not my name." 

On the third day, the messenger came back again, and said, 
" I have not been able to find a single new name. But as I 
came to a high mountain at the end of the forest, where the 
fox and the hare bid each other good night, there I saw a little 
house. Before the house a fire was burning, and round about 
the fire a funny Little Man was jumping. He hopped upon 
one leg, and shouted: 

"To-day I brew, to-morrow I bake, 
And next, I shall the Queen's child take! 
Ah! well it is, none knows the same — 
That Rumpelstiltskin is my name!' 9 

You may think how glad the Queen was when she heard the 
name! And when soon afterward the Little Man came in, 
and asked, "Now, Mistress Queen, what is my name?" she 
said : 

" Is your name Conrad? ** 

" No." 

" Is your name Harry? " 

" No." 

" Perhaps your name is Rumpelstiltskin? " 


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"perhaps," said she, "your name is rumpelstiltskin?" 

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" The devil has told you that! the devil has told you that! " 
cried the Little Man, and in his anger he stamped his right 
foot so deep into the earth that his whole leg went in. And 
then in rage, he pulled at his left leg so hard with both hands, 
that he tore himself in two. 


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ALONG lime ago, there were a King and Queen who 
said every day, " Ah, if only we had a child! " but they 
never had one. 

But it happened that once when the Queen was bathing, a 
Frog crept out of the water on to the land, and said to her, 
" Your wish shall be fulfilled. Before a year has gone by, you 
shall have a daughter." 

.What the Frog had said came true, and the Queen had a 
little girl, who was so pretty that the King could not contain 
himself for joy, and ordered a great feast. He invited not 
only his kindred, friends and acquaintance, but also the Wise 
.Women, in order that they might be kind and well-disposed 
toward the child. There were thirteen of them in his kingdom. 
But, as he had only twelve golden plates for them to eat out 
of, one of them had to be left at home. 

The feast was held with all manner of splendor. When it 
came to an end the Wise Women bestowed their magic gifts 

upon the baby. One gave Virtue, another Beauty, a third 


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RicKes, an3 so on with everything in the world that one can 
wish for. 

When eleven of them had made their promises, suddenly 
the thirteenth came in. She wished to avenge herself for not 
having been invited, and without greeting, or even looking at 
any one, she cried with a loud voice, " The King's Daughter, 
in her fifteenth year, shall prick herself with a spindle, and fall 
down dead." And, without saying a word more, she turned 
round and left the room. 

They were all shocked. But the twelfth, whose good wish 
still remained unspoken, came forward, and as she could not 
undo the evil sentence, but only soften it, she said, " It shall 
not be death, but a deep sleep of a hundred years, into which 
the Princess shall fall." 

The King, who wished to keep his dear child from the mis- 
fortune, gave orders that every spindle in the whole kingdom 
should be burnt. Meanwhile, the gifts of the Wise Women 
were fulfilled on the young girl, for she was so beautiful, 
modest, sweet tempered, and wise, that every one who saw her, 
was bound to love her. 

It happened that on the very day, when she was fifteen years 

old, the King and Queen were not at home, and the maiden was 

left in the palace quite alone. So she went round into all sorts 

of places, looked into rooms and bedchambers just as she liked, 

and at last came to an old tower. She climbed up the narrow 

winding-staircase, and reached a little door. A rusty key was 

in the lock, and when she turned it the door sprang open. 

There in a little room sat an Old Woman with a spindle, busily 

spinning flax. 


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" Good day, old Dame," said the King's Daughter; " what 
are you doing there? " 

" I am spinning," said the Old Woman, and nodded her 

" What sort of thing is that, whieh rattles round so 
merrily? " said the maiden, and she took the spindle and wanted 
to spin too. But scarcely had she touched the spindle when 
the magic decree was fulfilled, and she pricked her finger with 

And, in the very moment when she felt the prick, she fell 
down upon the bed that stood there, and lay in a deep sleep. 
And this sleep extended over the whole palace. 

The King and Queen, who had just come home, and had 
entered the great hall, began to go to sleep, and the whole of 
the Court with them. The horses, too, went to sleep in the 
stable, the dogs in the yard, the pigeons upon the roof, the flies 
on the wall. Even the fire, that was flaming on the hearth, be- 
came quiet and slept. The roast meat left off frizzling, and the 
cook, who was just going to pull the hair of the scullery hoy, 
because he had forgotten something, let him go, and went to 
sleep. And the wind fell; and on the trees before the castle 
not a leaf moved again. 

But round about the castle, there began to grow a hedge of 
thorns. Every year it became higher, and at last grew close 
up round the castle and all over it, so that there was nothing 
of it to be seen, not even the flag upon the roof. 

But the story of the beautiful sleeping " Briar-Rose," for 
so the Princess was named, went about the country, so that 
from time to time Kings' Sons came and tried to get through 


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the thorny hedge into the castle. But they found it impossible,, 
for the thorns held fast together, as if they had hands, and the 
youths were caught in them, could not get loose again, and 
died a miserable death. 

After long, long years, again a King's Son came to that 
country. He heard an old man talking about the thorn-hedge, 
and that a castle was said to stand behind it in which a wonder- 
fully beautiful Princess, named Briar-Rose, had been asleep 
for a hundred years; and that the King and Queen and the 
whole Court were asleep likewise. He had heard, too, from 
his grandfather, that many Kings' Sons had come, and had 
tried to get through the thorny hedge, but they had remained 
sticking fast in it, so had died a pitiful death. 

Then the youth said, " I am not afraid. I will go and see 
the beautiful Briar-Rose." The good old man might dissuade 
him as he would, he did not listen to his words. 

But by this time the hundred years had just passed. The 
day was come when Briar-Rose was to awake again. When the 
King's Son came near to the thorn-hedge, it was nothing but 
large and beautiful flowers, which parted from each other of 
their own accord, and let him pass unhurt. Then they closed 
again behind him like a hedge. 

In the castle-yard he saw the horses and the spotted hounds 
lying asleep. On the roof, sat the pigeons with their heads 
under their wings. And when he entered the house, the flies 
were asleep upon the wall, the cook in the kitchen was still 
holding out his hand to seize the boy, and the maid was sitting 
by the black hen which she was going to pluck. 

He went on farther, and in the great hall he saw the whole 


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of the Court lying asleep, and by the throne lay the King and 

Then he went on still farther, and all was so quiet that a 
breath could be heard. At last he came to the tower, and 
opened the door into the little room where Briar-Rose was 
sleeping. There she lay, so beautiful that he could not turn 
his eyes away. He stooped down and gave her a kiss. But as 
soon as he kissed her, Briar-Rose opened her eyes and awoke, 
and looked at him quite sweetly. 

Then they went down together, and the King awoke, and the 
Queen, and the whole Court, and gazed at each other in great 
astonishment. And the horses in the courtyard stood up and 
shook themselves. The hounds jumped up and wagged their 
tails. The pigeons upon the roof pulled out their heads from 
under their wings, looked round, and flew into the open coun- 
try. The flies on the wall crept again. The fire in the kitchen 
burned up and flickered and cooked the meat. The joint began 
to turn and frizzle, and the cook gave the boy such a box on the 
ear that he screamed, and the maid plucked the fowl ready for 
the spit. 

And then the marriage of the King's Son and Briar-Rose 
was celebrated with all splendor, and they lived contented to 
the end of their days. 


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THERE was once a man whose wife died, and a woman 
whose husband died; and the man had a daughter, and 
<i the woman also had a daughter. 

The girls were acquainted with each other. They went walk- 
ing together, and came to the woman's house. Then she said 
to the man's daughter: 

*' Listen! Tell your father that I would like to marry him. 
Then you shall wash yourself in milk every morning and drink 
wine; but my own daughter shall wash herself in water and 
drink water." 

The girl went home, and told her father what the woman had 
said. The man said, " What shall I do? Marriage is a joy, 
also a torment!" 

At last, as he could not decide, he pulled off his boot, and 
said, " Take this boot. It has a hole in the sole of it. Go with 
it upstairs to the loft. Hang it on the big nail. Then pour 
water into it. If it holds the water, then I will again take a 
wife. But if it runs through, I will not! " 

The girl did as she was ordered, but the water drew the hole 

[ 181 ] 

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together, and the boot became full to the top. She informed 
her father how it had turned out. 

Then he himself went up, and when he saw that she was 
right, he went to the widow and wooed her, and the wedding 
was celebrated. 

The next morning, when the two girls got up, there stood 
before the man's daughter, milk for her to wash in and wine 
for her to drink. But before the woman's daughter, stood 
water to wash herself with and water for drinking. 

On the second morning, stood water for washing and water 
for drinking before the man's daughter as well as before the 
woman's daughter. 

And on the third morning, stood water for washing and 
water for drinking before the man's daughter, and milk for 
washing and wine for drinking, before the woman's daughter, 
and so it continued. 

The woman became bitterly unkind to the man's daughter, 
and day by day did her best to treat her still worse. She was 
envious too because the man's daughter was beautiful and lov- 
able, and her own daughter ugly and repulsive. 

One day, in winter, when everything was frozen as hard as 
a stone, and hill and vale lay covered with snow, the woman 
made a frock of paper, called the man's daughter and said, 
" Here, put on this dress and go out into the wood, and fetch 
me a little basketful of strawberries, — I have a fancy for 

"Alas!" said the girl, "no strawberries grow in winter! 
The ground is frozen, and besides the snow has covered every- 
thing. And why am I to go in this paper frock? It is so cold 


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outside that one's very breath freezes! The wind will blow 
through the froek, and the thorns will tear it off my body," 

"Will you contradict me again? 5 ' said the woman. " See 
that you go, and do not show your face again until you have 
the basketful of strawberries! " 

Then she gave her a little piece of hard bread, and said, 
" This will last you the day," and thought, " You will die of 
cold and hunger outside, and will never be seen again by me." 

Then the girl obeyed, and put on the paper frock, and went 
out with the basket. Far and wide there was nothing but 
snow, and not a green blade to be seen. 

When she got into the wood she saw a small house out of 
which peeped three little Dwarfs. She wished them good day, 
and knocked modestly at the door. They cried, " Come in," 
and she entered the room and seated herself on the bench by 
the stove, where she began to warm herself and eat her break- 

The Dwarfs said, " Give us some of it." 

" Willingly," said she, and divided her bit of bread in two, 
and gave them the half. 

They asked, " What do you here in the forest in the winter 
time, in your thin dress? " 

" Ah," she answered, " I am to look for a basketful of straw- 
berries, and am not to go home until I can take them with me." 

When she had eaten her bread, they gave her a broom and 
said, " Sweep away the snow at the back door with it." 

But when she was outside, the three Little Men said to one 
another, " What shall we give her as she is so good, and has 

shared her bread with us? " 


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Then said the first, " My gift is, that every day she shall 
grow more beautiful." 

The second said, " My gift is, that gold pieces shall fall out 
of her mouth every time she speaks." 

The third said, " My gift is, that a King shall come and take 
her to wife." 

The girl, however, did as the Little Men had bidden her, 
swept away the snow behind the little house with the broom. 
And what did she find but real ripe strawberries, which came 
up quite dark-red out of the snow! In her joy she hastily 
gathered her basket full, thanked the Little Men, shook hands 
witl each of them, and ran home to take the woman what she 
had longed for so much. 

When she went in and said good-evening, a piece of gold at 
once fell out of her mouth. Thereupon she related what had 
happened to her in the wood. But with every word she spoke, 
gold pieces fell from her mouth, until very soon the whole 
room was covered with them. 

" Now look at her pride," cried the woman's daughter, " to 
throw about gold in that way! " but she was secretly envious of 
it, and wanted to go into the forest to seek strawberries. 

Her mother said, " Xo, my dear little Daughter, it is too 
cold, you might die of cold." 

However, as her daughter let her have no peace, the mother 
at last yielded, made her a magnificent dress of fur, which she 
was obliged to put on, and gave her bread-and-butter and cake 
to take with her. 

The girl went into the forest and straight up to the little 

house. The three Little Men peeped out again, but she did 


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not greet them. Without looking round at them and without 
speaking to them, she went awkwardly into the room, seated 
herself by the stove, and began to eat her bread-and-butter and 

" Give us some of it," cried the Little Men. 

But she replied, " There is not enough for myself, so how 
can I give it away to other people? " 

When she had done eating, they said, " There is a broom 
for you, sweep all clean for us outside by the back-door/' 

" Humph! Sweep for yourselves," she answered, "I am 
not your servant." 

When she saw that they were not going to give her anything, 
she went out the door. Then the Little Men said to each other, 
" What shall we give her as she is so naughty, and has a wicked 
envious heart, that will never let her do a good turn to any 

The first said, " I grant that she may grow uglier every 

The second said, " I grant that at every word she says, a 
toad shall spring out of her mouth." 

The third said, " I grant that she may die a miserable death." 

The maiden looked for strawberries outside, but as she found 
none, she went angrily home. And when she opened her 
mouth, and was about to tell her mother what had happened 
to her in the wood, with each word she said, a toad sprang out 
of her mouth, so that everybody was seized with horror of her. 

Then her mother was still more enraged, and thought of 
nothing but how to do every possible injury to the man's 

daughter, whose beautv, however, grew daily greater. At 


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length she took a cauldron, set it on the fire, and boiled yarn 
in it. When it was boiled, she flung it on the poor girl's shoul- 
der, and gave her an axe in order that she might go on the 
frozen river, cut a hole in the ice, and rinse the yarn. 

She was obedient, went thither and cut a hole in the ice. 
And while she was in the midst of her cutting, a splendid car- 
riage came driving up, in which sat the King. The carriage 
stopped, and the King asked, " My Child, who are you, and 
what are you doing here? " 

" I am a poor girl, and I am rinsing yarn." 

Then the King felt compassion, and when he saw that she 
was so very beautiful, he said to her, " Will you go away with 
me? " 

" Ah, yes, with all my heart," she answered, for she was glad 
to get away from the mother and sister. 

So she got into the carriage and drove away with the King, 
and when they arrived at his palace, the wedding was cele- 
brated with great pomp, as the Little Men had granted to the 


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IN the olden time, there was a King, who had beliind his 
palace a beautiful pleasure-garden, in which there was a 
tree that bore Golden Apples. When the apples were 
getting ripe they were counted, but on the very next morning 
one was missing. This was told to the King, and he ordered 
that a watch should be kept every night beneath the tree. 

The King had three sons, the eldest of whom he sent, as 
soon as night came, into the garden. But when it was mid- 
night, he could not keep himself from sleeping, and next morn- 
ing again an apple was gone. 

The following night, the second son had to keep watch, it 
fared no better with him. As soon as twelve o ? clock had struck 
he fell asleep, and in the morning an apple was gone. 

Now, it came to the turn of the third son to watch. He was 
quite ready, but the King had not much trust in him, and 
thought that he would be of less use than his brothers. But at 
last he let him go. 

The youth lay down beneath the tree, but kept awake, and 

did not let sleep master him. When it struck twelve, some- 


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thing rustled through the air, and in the moonlight he saw a 
bird coming whose feathers were -shining with gold. The bird 
alighted on the tree, and had just plucked off an apple, when 
the youth shot an arrow at him. The bird flew off, but the 
arrow had struck his plumage, and one of his golden feathers 
fell down. 

The youth picked it up, and the next morning took it to the 
King and told him what he had seen in the night. The King 
called his council together, and every one declared that a 
feather like this was worth more than the whole kingdom. 

" If the feather is so precious," declared the King, " one 
alone will not do for me. I must and will have the whole 

The eldest son set out. He trusted to his cleverness, and 
thought that he would easily find the Golden Bird. When he 
had gone some distance he saw a Fox sitting at the edge of a 
wood, so He cocked his gun and took aim at him. 

The Fox cried, "Do not shoot me! And in return I will 
give you some good counsel. You are on the way to the Golden 
Bird. This evening you will come to a village in which stand 
two inns opposite to one another. One of them is lighted up 
brightly, and all goes on merrily within, but do not enter it. 
Go rather into the other, even though it seems a bad one. 55 

" How can such a silly beast give wise advice? " thought the 
King's Son, and he pulled the trigger. But he missed the Fox, 
who stretched out his tail and ran quickly into the wood. 

So he pursued his way, and by evening came to the village 
where the two inns were. In one they were singing and danc- 
ing. The other had a poor, miserable look. 
*- [ 188 ] 

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" I should be a fool, indeed," he thought, " if I were to go 
into the shabby tavern, and pass by the good one." So he went 
into the cheerful one, lived there in riot and revel, and forgot 
the bird and his father, and all good counsels. 

Some time had passed, and when the eldest son, month after 
month, did not come home, the second set out, wishing to find 
the Golden Bird. The Fox met him as he had met the eldest, 
and gave him the good advice, of which he took no heed. He 
came to the two inns. His brother was standing at the win- 
dow of the one from which came the music, and called to him. 
He could not resist, but went inside, and lived only for pleas- 

Again some time passed, and then the youngest King's Son 
wanted to set off and try his luck. But his father would not 
allow it. " It is of no use," said he, " he will be less likely to 
find the Golden Bird than his brothers. And if a mishap were 
to befall him, he knows not how to help himself. He is a little 
wanting at the best." But at last, as he had no peace, he let 
him go. 

Again the Fox was sitting outside the wood, and begged 
for his life, and offered his good advice. The youth was good- 
natured, and said, " Be easy, little Fox, I will do you no harm." 

" You shall not repent it," answered the Fox; " and that you 
may proceed more quickly, get up behind on my tail." 

And scarcely had he seated himself, when the Fox began to 

run, and away he went over stock and stone till his hair whistled 

in the wind. When they came to the village, the youth got off. 

He followed the good advice, and without looking round 

turned into the little inn, where he spent the night quietly. 


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THe next morning, as soon as he got into the open country, 
there sat the Fox already, and said, " I will tell you further 
what you have to do. Go straight forward. At last you will 
come to a castle, in front of which a whole regiment of soldiers 
is lying, but do not trouble yourself about them, for they will all 
be asleep and snoring, 

" Go through the midst of them straight into the castle. Go 
through all the rooms, till at last you will come to a chamber 
where a Golden Bird is hanging in a wooden cage. Close by, 
there stands an empty gold cage for show. Beware of taking 
the bird out of the common cage and putting it into the fine 
one, or it may go badly with you." 

With these words the Fox again stretched out his tail, and 
the King's Son seated himself upon it. Away he went over 
stock and stone, till his hair whistled in the wind. 

When he came to the castle he found everything as the Fox 
had said. The King's Son went into the chamber where the 
Golden Bird was shut up in a wooden cage, whilst a golden one 
stood hard by; and the three Golden Apples lay about the 

" But," thought he, " it would be absurd if I were to leave 
the beautiful bird in the common and ugly cage," so he opened 
the door, laid hold of it, and put it into the golden cage. But 
at the same moment the bird uttered a shrill cry. 

The soldiers awoke, rushed in, and took him off to prison. 
The next morning he was taken before a court of justice, and 
as lie confessed everything, was sentenced to death. 

The King, however, said that he would grant him his life on 

one condition — namely, if he brought him the Golden Horse 


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which ran faster than the wind. And in that case he should 
receive, over and above, as a reward, the Golden Bird. 

The King's Son set off, but he sighed and was sorrowful, for 
how was he to find the Golden Horse? But all at once he saw 
his old friend the Fox sitting on the road. 

" Look you," said the Fox, " this has happened because you 
did not give heed to me. However, be of good courage. I 
will help you, and tell you how to get to the Golden Horse. 
You must go straight on, and you will come to a castle, where 
in the stable stands the horse. The grooms will be lying in 
front of the stable. 

" They will be asleep and snoring, and you can quietly lead 
out the Golden Horse. But of one thing you must take heed. 
Put on him the common saddle of wood and leather, and not 
the golden one, which hangs close by, else it will go ill with 

Then the Fox stretched out his tail, the King's Son seated 
himself upon it. Away he went over stock and stone, until his 
hair whistled in the wind. 

Everything happened just as the Fox had said. The King's 
Son came to the stable in which the Golden Horse was stand- 
ing, but just as he was going to put the common saddle upon 
him, he thought, " It will be a shame to such a beautiful beast, 
if I do not give him the good saddle which belongs to him by 

But scarcely had the golden saddle touched the horse than he 
began to neigh loudly. The grooms awoke, seized the youth, 
and threw him into prison. The next morning he was sen- 
tenced by the court to death; but the King promised to grant 


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him his life, and the Golden Horse as well, if he would rescue 
the beautiful Princess from the Golden Castle. 

With a heavy heart the youth set out. Yet luckily for him 
he soon found the trusty Fox, 

" I ought to leave you to your ill-luck," said the Fox, " but 
I pity you, and will help you once more out of your trouble. 
This road takes you straight to the Golden Castle. You will 
reach it by eventide. And at night, when everything is quiet, 
the beautiful Princess goes to the bathing-house to bathe. 
When she enters it, run up to her and give her a kiss. Then 
she will follow you, and you can take her away with you. Only 
do not allow her to say farewell to her parents first, or it will go 
ill with you." 

Then the Fox stretched out his tail, the King's Son seated 
himself upon it. Away the Fox went, over stock and stone, 
till his hair whistled in the wind. 

When he reached the Golden Castle it was just as the Fox 
had said. He waited until midnight, when everything lay in 
deep sleep, and the beautiful Princess was going to the bath- 
ing-house. Then he sprang out and gave her a kiss. She said 
that she would like to go with him, but she asked him pitifully, 
and with tears, to be allowed to take leave of her parents. 

At first he withstood her prayer, but when she wept more 
and more, and fell at his feet, he at last gave in. But no sooner 
had the maiden reached the bedside of her father, than he and 
all the rest in the castle awoke, and the youth was laid hold of 
and put into prison. 

The next morning, the King said to him, " Your life is for- 
feited, and you can only find mercy if you take away the hill 

[192] ' 

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which stands in front of my windows, and prevents my seeing 
beyond it. And you must finish it all w r ithin eight days. If 
you do that you shall have my daughter as your reward." 

The King's Son began, and dug and shovelled without leav- 
ing off. But after seven days when he saw how little he had 
done, and how all his work was as good as nothing, he fell into 
great sorrow and gave up all hope. 

On the evening of the seventh day the Fox appeared and 
said, " You do not deserve that I should take any trouble about 
you. Nevertheless, go away and lie down to sleep. I will do 
the work for you." 

The next morning, when he awoke and looked out of the 
window, the hill had gone. Full of joy, the youth ran to the 
King, and told him that the task was fulfilled. And whether 
he liked it or not, the King had to hold to his word and give him 
his daughter. 

So the two set forth together, and it was not long before the 
trusty Fox came up with them. " You have certainly got 
what is best," said he, " but the Golden Horse also belongs to 
the maiden of the Golden Castle." 

" How shall I get it? " asked the youth, 

" That I will tell you," answered the Fox; " first take the 
beautiful maiden to the King who sent you to the Golden 
Castle. There will be unheard-of rejoicing. They will gladly 
give you the Golden Horse, and will bring it out to you." 

All was brought to pass successfully, and the King's Son 
carried off the beautiful Princess on the Golden Horse. 

The Fox did not remain behind, and he said to the youth, 

" Now I will help vou to ^et the Golden Bird. When you 


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come near to the castle where the Golden Bird is to be found, 
let the maiden get down, and I will take her into my care. 
Then ride with the Golden Horse into the castle-yard. There 
will be great rejoicing at the sight, and they will bring out the 
Golden Bird for you." 

When all was accomplished and the King's Son was about 
to ride home with his treasures, the Fox said, " Now you shall 
reward me for my help." 

" What do you require for it? " asked the youth. 

u When you get into the wood yonder, shoot me dead, and 
chop off my head and feet." 

" That would be fine gratitude," said the King's Son. " I 
cannot possibly do that for you." 

The Fox said, " If you will not do it I must leave you. But 
before I go away I will give you a piece of good advice. Be 
careful about two things. Buy no gallows'-flesh, and do not 
sit at the edge of any well." And then he ran into the wood. 

The youth thought, " That is a wonderful beast, he has 
strange whims. Who is going to buy gallows'-flesh? and the 
desire to sit at the edge of a well has never yet seized me." 

He rode on with the beautiful maiden, and his road took him 
again through the village in which his two brothers had re- 
mained. There w r as a great stir and noise, and, when lie asked 
w T hat was going on, he was told that two men were going to be 
hanged. As he came nearer to the place he saw that they were 
his brothers, who had been playing all kinds of wicked pranks, 
and had squandered their entire wealth. He inquired whether 
they could not be set free. 

" If you will pay for them," answered the people; " but why 


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should you waste your money on wicked men, and buy them 

He did not think twice about it, but paid for them. And 
when they were set free they all went on their way together. 

They came to the wood where the Fox had first met them, 
and, as it was cool and pleasant within it, whilst the sun shone 
hotly, the two brothers said, " Let us rest a little by the well, 
and eat and drink." 

He agreed, and whilst they were talking he forgot himself, 
and sat down upon the edge of the well without foreboding any 
evil. But the two brothers threw him backwards into the well, 
took the maiden, the Horse, and the Bird, and went home to 
their father. " Here we bring vou not onlv the Golden Bird," 
said they; "we have won the Golden Horse also, and the 
maiden from the Golden Castle." 

Then was there great joy. But the Horse would not eat, 
the Bird would not sing, and the maiden sat and wept. 

But the youngest brother was not dead. By good fortune 
the well was dry, and he fell upon soft moss without being hurt. 
But he could not get out again. Even in this strait, the faith- 
ful Fox did not leave him. He came and leapt down to him, 
and upbraided him for having forgotten his advice. " But yet 
I cannot give it up so," he said; " I will help you up again into 
daylight." He bade him grasp his tail and keep tight hold of 
it; and then he pulled him up. 

" You are not out of all danger yet," said the Fox. " Your 

brothers were not sure of your death, and have surrounded the 

wood with watchers, who are to kill you if you let yourself be 



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But a poor man was sitting upon the road, with whom the 
youth changed clothes, and in this way he got to the King's 

No one knew him, hut the Bird began to sing, the Horse 
began to eat, and the beautiful maiden left off weeping. The 
King, astonished, asked, " What does this mean? " 

Then the maiden said, " I do not know, but I have been so 
sorrowful and now I am so happy! I feel as if my true Bride- 
groom had come." She told him all that had happened, al- 
though the other brothers had threatened her with death if she 
were to betray anything. 

The King commanded that all people, who were in his castle, 
should be brought before him; and amongst them came the 
youth in his ragged clothes. But the maiden knew him at onee 
and fell upon his neek. The wicked brothers were seized and 
put to death, but he was married to the beautiful maiden and 
declared heir to the King. 

But how did it fare with the poor Fox? Long afterward, 
the King's Son was once again walking in the wood, when the 
Fox met him and said, " You have everything now that you 
can wish for. But there is never an end to my misery, and yet 
it is in your power to free me," and again he asked him with 
tears to shoot him dead and to chop off his head and feet. 

So he did it, and searcely was it done when the Fox was 
changed into a man, and was no other than the brother of the 
beautiful Prineess, who at last was freed from the magic eharm 
which had been laid upon him. 

And now nothing more was wanting to tlieir happiness as 

long as thev lived. 


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TWO King's Sons once went out in search of adventures, 
and fell into a wild, disorderly way of living, so that 
they never came home again. The youngest, who was 
called Simpleton, set out to seek his brothers. When at length 
he found them, they mocked him for thinking that he with his 
simplicity could get through the world, when they two could 
not make their way, and yet were so much cleverer. 

They all three traveled away together, and came to an ant- 
hill. The two elder wanted to destroy it, to see the little ants 
creeping about in their terror, carrying their eggs away, but 
Simpleton said, " Leave the creatures in peace. I will not 
allow you to disturb them." 

Then they went farther, and came to a lake, on which a great 
number of ducks were swimming. The two brothers wanted 
to catch a couple and roast them, but Simpleton would not 
permit it, and said, " Leave the creatures in peace. I will not 
suffer you to kill them." 

At length they eame to a bee's nest, in which there was so 

much honev, that it ran out of the trunk of the tree where it was. 


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The two wanted to make a fire under the tree, and suffocate 
the bees in order to take away the honey, but Simpleton again 
stopped them and said, " Leave the creatures in peace. I will 
not allow you to burn them," 

At last the two brothers arrived at' a castle where stone horses 
were standing in the stables, and no human being was to be 
seen. They went through all the halls until they came to a 
door in which were three locks. In the middle of the door 
there was a little pane, through which they could see into the 

There they saw a little Gray Man sitting at a table. They 
called him, once, twice, but he did not hear. Then they called 
him for the third time, when he got up, opened the locks, and 
came out. He said nothing but led them to a handsomely- 
spread table; and when they had eaten and drunk, he took each 
of them to a bedroom. 

Next morning, the little Gray Man came to the eldest, beck- 
oned to him, and conducted him to a stone table, on which were 
inscribed three tasks, by the doing of which the castle could 
be delivered. The first was that in the forest, beneath the moss, 
lay the Princess's pearls, a thousand in number, which must be 
picked up. And if by sunset, one single pearl was wanting, he 
who had looked for them would be turned to stone. 

The eldest went thither, and sought the whole day, but when 
it came to an end, he had found only one hundred, and what 
was written on the table came. to pass, he was changed into 

Next day, the second brother undertook the adventure. It 

did not, however, fare much better with him than with the 


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eldest. He did not find more than two hundred pearls, and 
was changed to stone. 

At last, the turn came to Simpleton, who sought in the moss. 
But it was so hard to find the pearls, and he got on so slowly, 
that he seated himself on a stone, and wept. And while he was 
thus sitting, the King of the Ants, whose life he had once saved, 
came with five thousand ants, and before long the little crea- 
tures had got all the pearls together, and laid them in a heap. 

The second task was to fetch out of the lake the key of the 
King's Daughter's bedchamber. When Simpleton came to 
the lake, the dueks which he had saved, swam up to him, dived 
down, and brought the key out of the water. 

But the third task was the most difficult. From amongst the 
three sleeping daughters of the King, the youngest and dear- 
est was to be sought out. They resembled each other exactly, 
and were only to be distinguished by their having eaten differ- 
ent sweetmeats before they fell asleep: the eldest a bit of sugar; 
the second a little syrup; and the youngest a spoonful of honey. 

Then the Queen of the Bees, which Simpleton had protected 
from the fire, came and tasted the lips of all three. At last she 
remained sitting on the mouth which had eaten honey; and 
thus the King's Son recognized the right Princess. 

Then the enchantment was at an end. Everything was re- 
leased from sleep, and those who had been turned to stone re- 
ceived onee more their natural forms. Simpleton married the 
youngest and sweetest Princess, and after her father's death 
became King, while his two brothers received the two other 


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THERE was once a forester, who went into the forest 
to hunt. When he entered it, he heard a screaming 
as if a little child was there. 

He followed the sound, and at last came to a high tree. In 
the top of it a little child was sitting. His mother had fallen 
asleep under the tree with the child, and a bird of prey had 
seen him in her arms, flown down, and snatched him away, and 
set him on the high tree. 

The forester climbed the tree, and brought the child down. 
And he thought to himself, " I will take him home, and bring 
him up with my Lina." 

He took him home, and the two children grew up together. 
The one he had found in a tree, he called Bird-Found, because 
a bird had carried it away, 

Bird-Found and Lina loved each other so dearly, that when 
they did not see each other they were sad. 

The forester, however, had an old cook, who one evening 

took two pails and began to fetch water, and did not go once 

only, but many times, out to the spring. 


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Lina saw this and said, " Hark you, old Sanna, why are you 
fetching so much water? " 

Then the cook said, " Early to-morrow morning, when the 
forester is out hunting, I will heat the water. When it is boil- 
ing in the kettle, I will throw in Bird-Found, and will boil him 
in it." 

Betimes next morning, the forester got up and went out 
hunting? and when he was gone the children were still in bed. 
Then Lina said to Bird-Found, " If you will never leave me, 
I will never leave you." 

Bird-Found said, " Neither now, nor ever, will I leave you." 

Then said Lina, " I will tell you. Last night, old Sanna 
carried so many buckets of water into the house that I asked 
her why she was doing so. She said that early to-morrow 
morning, when Father was out hunting, she would set on the 
kettle full of water, throw you into it and boil you. But we 
will get up quickly, dress ourselves, and go away together." 

The two children, therefore, got up, dressed themselves 
quickly, and went away. When the water in the kettle Mas 
boiling, the cook came into the bedroom to fetch Bird-Found 
and throw him into it* But when she came in, and went to the 
beds, both the children were gone. 

Then she was terribly frightened, and she said to herself, 
" What shall I say now when the forester comes home and 
sees that the children are gone? They must be followed in- 
stantly and brought back." 

Then tHe cook sent three servants after them, who were to 
run and overtake the children. 

The children, however, were sitting outside the forest, and 

[ 201 ] 

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when they saw from afar the three servants running, Lina said 
to Bird-Found, " Never leave me, and I will never leave you." 

Bird-Found said, " Neither now, nor ever." 

Then said Lina, " Do you become a rose-tree, and I the rose 
upon it." 

When the three servants came to the forest, nothing was 
there but a rose-tree and one rose on it; the children were no- 
where. Said they, " There is nothing to be done here," and 
they went home and told the cook that they had seen nothing 
in the forest but a little rose-bush with one rose on it. 

Then the old cook scolded and said, " You simpletons, you 
should have cut the rose-bush in two, and have broken off the 
rose and brought it home with you. Go, and do it at once." 

They had therefore to go out and look for the second time. 
The children, however, saw them coming from a distance. 

Then Lina said, " Bird-Found, never leave me, and I will 
never leave you." 

Bird-Found said, " Neither now, nor ever." 

Said Lina, " Then do you become a church, and I'll be the 
chandelier in it." 

So when the three servants came, nothing was there but a 
church, with a chandelier in it. They said therefore to each 
other, " What can we do here? Let us go home." When they 
got home, the cook asked if they had not found them. They 
said no, they had found nothing but a church, and that there 
was a chandelier in it. 

The cook scolded them and said, " You fools ! Why did you 

not pull the church to pieces, and bring the chandelier home 

with you? " 


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And now the old cook herself got on her legs, and M'ent, with 
the three servants, in pursuit of the children. The children 
saw from afar that the three servants were coming, and the 
cook waddling after them. 

Then said Lina, " Bird-Found, never leave me, and I will 
never leave you." 

Then said Bird-Found, " Neither now, nor ever." 
Said Lina, " Be a fishpond, and I will be the duck upon it." 
The cook, however, came up to them, and when she saw the 
pond she lay down by it, and was about to drink it up, when 
she fell into the water, and there the old Witch had to drown. 

Then the children went home together, and were heartily 
delighted, and if they are not dead, they are living still. 


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THERE was a man who had three sons, the youngest of 
whom was called Dunderhead, and was despised, 
mocked, and put down on every occasion. 

It happened, that the eldest wanted to go into the forest to 
hew wood. Before he went his mother gave him a beautiful 
sweet cake and a bottle of wine, that he might not suffer from 
hunger or thirst. 

When he entered the forest, there met him a little old Gray 
Man who bade him good-day, and said, " Do give me a piece of 
cake out of your pocket, and let me have a draught of your 
wine. I am so hungry and thirsty." 

But the prudent youth answered, " If I give you my cake 
and wine, I shall have none for myself. Be off with you," and 
he left the Little Man standing and went on. 

But when he began to hew down a tree, it was not long be- 
fore he made a false stroke, and the axe cut him in the arm. 
So he had to go home and have it bound up. And this was the 
little Gray Man's doing. 

After this, the second son went into the forest, and his 

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mother gave him, like the eldest, a cake and a bottle of wine. 
The little old Gray Man met him likewise, and asked him for 
a piece of cake and a drink of wine. But the second son, too, 
said with much reason, " What I give you will be taken away 
from myself. Be off!" and he left the Little Man standing 
and went on. 

His punishment, however, was not delayed. When he had 
made a few strokes at the tree, he struck himself in the leg. So 
he had to be carried home. 

Then Dunderhead said, " Father, do let me go and cut 

The father answered, " Your brothers have hurt themselves 
doing so. Leave it alone. You do not understand anything 
about it." 

But Dunderhead begged so long that at last he said, " Go 
then. You will get wiser by hurting yourself." 

His mother gave him a cake made with water and baked in 
the einders, and with it a bottle of sour beer. 

When he came to the forest the little old Gray Man met 
him likewise, and greeting him said, " Give me a piece of your 
cake and a drink out of your bottle. I am so hungry and 

Dunderhead answered, " I have only cinder-cake and sour 
beer. If that pleases you, we will sit down and eat." 

So they sat down, and when Dunderhead pulled out his 
cinder-cake, it was a fine sweet cake, and the sour beer had be- 
come good wine. 

So they ate and drank, and after that the Little Man said, 
" Since you have a good heart, and are willing to divide what 


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you have, I will give you good luck. There stands an old tree. 
Cut it down, and you will find something at the roots/' 

Then the old man took leave of him. 

Dunderhead went and cut down the tree; and when it fell 
there was a Goose sitting in the roots, with feathers of pure 
gold. He lifted her up, and taking her with him, went to an 
inn, where he thought he would stay the night. Now the host 
had three daughters, who saw the Goose and were curious to 
know what such a wonderful bird might be. And each wanted 
one of its feathers. 

The eldest thought, " I shall soon find an opportunity of 
pulling out a feather," and when Dunderhead was gone out, she 
seized the Goose by the wing. But her finger and hand re- 
mained sticking fast to it. 

The second came in soon afterward, thinking only of how 
she might get a feather for herself, but she had scarcely touched 
her sister than she was held fast. 

At last, the third came with the like intent, and the others 
screamed out, " Keep away! For goodness' sake keep away! " 

But she did not understand why she was to keep away. 
" The others are there," she thought, " I may as well be there 
too," and ran to them. But as soon as she had touched her 
sister, she remained sticking fast to her. So they had to spend 
the night with the Goose. 

The next morning, Dunderhead took the Goose under his 
arm and set out, without troubling himself about the three girls 
who were hanging on to it. They were obliged to run after 
him, now left, now right, just as he was inclined to go. 

In the middle of the fields, the parson met them, and when 


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he saw the procession he said, " For shame, you good-for- 
nothing girls! Why are you running across the fields after 
this young man? Is that seemly? " At the same time he seized 
the youngest by the hand in order to pull her away. But as 
soon as he touched her, he likewise stuck fast, and was obliged 
to run behind. Before long, the sexton came by and saw his 
master, the parson, running on foot behind three girls. He was 
astonished at this, and called out, "Hi! your Reverence! 
Whither away so quickly? Do not forget that we have a 
christening to-day! " and running after him he took him by the 
sleeve, but was also held fast. 

While the five were trotting thus one behind the other, two 
laborers came with their hoes from the fields. The parson 
called out to them and begged that they would set him and 
the sexton free. But they had scarcely touched the sexton, 
when they were held fast. And now there were seven of them 
running behind Dunderhead and the Goose. 

Soon afterward, he came to a city, where a King ruled who 
had a daughter who was so serious that no one could make her 
laugh. So he had put forth a decree that whosoever should 
make her laugh should marry her. When Dunderhead heard 
this, he went with his Goose and all her train before the King's 

As soon as she saw the seven people running on and on, one 
behind the other, she began to laugh very loudly as if she would 
never leave off. Thereupon Dunderhead asked to have her for 
his wife, and the wedding was celebrated. 

After the King's death, Dunderhead inherited the Kingdom, 

and lived a long time contentedly with his wife. 


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THERE was once a widow who had two daughters, one 
of whom was beautiful and industrious, whilst the 
other was ugly and lazy. But she was much fonder 
of the ugly and lazy one. Every day, the other, poor girl, had 
to sit by a well in the highway, and spin, spin till her fingers 

Now it happened, one day, that the shuttle was stained with 
her blood. She dipped it in the well to wash the stains off, and 
it dropped out of her hand and fell to the bottom. She began 
to weep, and ran to the woman, and told her of the mishap. 

She scolded her hard, and was so cruel as to say, " Since 
you have let the shuttle fall in, you must fetch it out again." 

So the girl went back to the well, and did not know what to 
do. Then in the anguish of her heart, she jumped into the well 
to get the shuttle. She lost her senses. But when she awoke 
and came to herself, she was in a lovely meadow, where the 
sun was shining and thousands of flowers were growing. 

Along this meadow she went, and at length came to a baker's 

oven full of bread. And the bread cried: 


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"Oh, take me out! Take me out! 
Or I shall burn! I am well baked!" 

So she went up to it, and, with the bread shovel took out all 
the loaves one after the other. 

After that, she went on till she came to a tree covered with 
apples, and it called to her: 

"Oh, shake me! Shake me! 
We apples are all ripe!' 9 

So she shook the tree till the apples fell like rain, and went on 
shaking till they were all down. And when she had gathered 
them into a heap, she went on her way. 

At last, she came to a little house out of which an Old 
Woman was peeping. She had such large teeth that the girl 
was frightened, and was about to run away. 

But the Old Woman called out to her, "What are you 
afraid of, my Child? Stay with me. If you will do the work 
in my house carefully, you shall be the better for it! Only you 
must take care to make my bed well, and to shake it thoroughly 
till the feathers fly — for then it snows on earth. I am Mother 

As the Old Woman spoke so kindly to her, the girl took 
heart, and willingly entered her service. She did everything 
to the Old Woman's satisfaction, and always shook her bed so 
hard that the feathers flew about like snowflakes. So she lived 
happily with her, never an angry word, and boiled or roasted 
meat every day. 

She stayed some time with Mother Holle, then she grew 

sad. At first she did not know what was the matter with her, 


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but, by and by, she found that it was homesickness. Although 
she was many thousand times better off here than at home, 
still she had a longing to be there. 

At last, she said to the Old Woman, " I am longing for 
home. However well off I am down here, I cannot stay any 
longer. I must go up again to my own people." 

Mother Holle said, " I am pleased that you long for your 
home again. You have served me so faithfully, that I myself 
will take you up again." 

Thereupon she took her by the hand, and led her to a large 
door. The door was opened, and just as the girl was stand- 
ing beneath the doorway, a heavy shower of Gold-Rain 
fell, and all the gold stuck to her so that she was covered 
with it. 

" You shall have that because you are so industrious," said 
Mother Holle. And at the same time, she gave her back the 
shuttle which she had let fall into the well. 

Thereupon the door closed, and the girl found herself again 
upon the earth, not far from her mother's house. 

As she went into the yard, the cock was standing by the 

well, and cried : 

4 ' Cock-a-doodle-doo! 
Tour Golden OirVs come back to you!" 

So she went into her mother. And as she was thus covered with 

gold, she was welcomed by both her and the sister. 

The girl told all that had happened to her. As soon as the 

mother heard how she had come by such great riches, she was 

anxious for the same good fortune to befall her ugly and lazy 

daughter. She had to seat herself by the well and spin. And 


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in order that her shuttle might be stained with blood, she stuck 
her hand into a thorn-bush, and pricked her finger. Then she 
threw her shuttle into the well, and jumped in after it. 

She eame like the other to the beautiful meadow, and walked 
along the very same path. When she got to the oven, the bread 
eried again: 

"Oft, take me out! Take me out! 
Or I shall burn! I am weU baked!" 

But the lazy thing answered, " As if I wanted to soil myself! " 
and on she went. 

Soon she eame to the apple-tree, which eried: 

"Oft, shake me! Shake me! 
We apples are all ripe!' 9 

But she answered, " I like that! One of you might fall on my 
head! " and on she went. 

When she eame to Mother Holle's house, she was not afraid, 
for she had already heard about her big teeth. She hired her- 
self out immediately. 

The first day, she made herself work diligently, and obeyed 
Mother Holle, when she told her to do anything, for she was 
thinking of all the gold that she would give her. 

But on the second day, she began to be lazy, and on the third 
day still more so, for then she would not get up in the morning. 
Neither did she make Mother Holle's bed carefully, nor shake 
it so as to make the feathers fly up. 

Mother Holle was soon tired of this, and gave her notice to 
leave. The lazy girl was willing to go, and thought that now 

the Gold-Rain would come. Mother Holle led her to the great 


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doorway. But while she was standing under it, instead of gold, 
a big kettlef ul of pitch was emptied over her. 

" That is the reward of your service," said Mother Holle, 
and shut the door. 

So the lazy girl went home. She was covered with pitch, 
and the cock by the well, as soon as he saw her, cried out: 

' ' Cock-a-doodle-doo ! 
Your Pitchy Girl's come hack to you! 99 

But the pitch stuck fast to her, and could not be got off so long 
as she lived. 


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HILL and vale do not come together, but the children of 
men do, good and bad. In this way a shoemaker and a 
tailor once met with each other in their travels. 
The tailor was a handsome little fellow who was always 
merry and full of enjoyment. He saw the shoemaker coming 
toward him from the other side, and as he observed by his bag 
what kind of a trade he plied, he sang a little mocking song to 


Sew me the seam, 
Draw me the thread, 
Spread it with pitch, 
Knock the nail on the head. 

The shoemaker, however, could not endure a joke. He pulled 
a face as if he had drunk vinegar, and made a gesture as if he 
were about to seize the tailor by the throat. 

But the little fellow began to laugh, reached him his bottle, 
and said, " No harm was meant, take a drink, and swallow your 
anger down." 

The shoemaker took a very hearty drink, and the storm on 

his face began to clear away. 


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He gave the bottle back to the tailor, and said, " I spoke 
civilly to you. One speaks well after much drinking, but not 
after much thirst. Shall we travel together? " 

" All right," answered the tailor, " if only it suits you to go 
into a big town where there is no lack of work." 

" That is just where I want to go," answered the shoemaker. 
" In a small nest there is nothing to earn; and in the countiy, 
people like to go barefoot." 

They traveled therefore onward together, and always set one 
foot before the other like a weazel in the snow. 

Both of them had time enough, but little to bite and to break. 
When they reached a town, they went about and paid their 
respects to the tradesmen. 

Because the tailor looked so lively and merry, and had such 
pretty red cheeks, every one gave him work willingly. And 
when luck was good, the master's daughters gave him a kiss 
beneath the porch, as well. When he again fell in with the 
shoemaker, the tailor had always the most in his bundle. 

The ill-tempered shoemaker made a wry face, and thought, 
" The greater the rascal the more the luck." 

But the tailor began to laugh and to sing, and shared all he 
got with his comrade. If a couple of pence jingled in his pock- 
ets, he ordered good cheer, and thumped the table in his joy 
till the glasses danced, and it was lightly come, lightly go, with 

When they had traveled for some time, they came to a great 
forest through which passed the road to the capital. Two foot- 
paths, however, led through it, one of them a seven days' jour- 


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ney, and the other only two. But neither of the travelers knew 
which way Avas the short one. 

They seated themselves beneath an oak-tree, and took coun- 
sel together as to Avhat they should do and for Iioav many days 
they should provide themselves Avith bread. 

The shoemaker said, " One must look before one leaps. I 
will take with me bread for a Aveek." 

"What!" said the tailor, "drag bread for seven days on 
one's back like a beast of burden, and not be able to look about. 
I shall trust in God, and not trouble myself about anything! 
The money I have in my pocket is as good in summer as in 
winter; but in hot weather bread gets dry and mouldy into the 
bargain. Even my coat does not go as far as it might. Be- 
sides, why should Ave not find the right Avay? Bread for two 
days, and that's enough." 

Each, therefore, bought his OAvn bread. And then they tried 
their luck in the forest. 

It Avas as quiet there as in a church. No Avind stirred, no 
brook murmured, no bird sang, and through the thickly-leaved 
branches, no sunbeam forced its Avay. 

The shoemaker spoke never a AA r ord, the heavy bread Aveighed 
doAvn his back until the perspiration streamed doAvn his cross 
and gloomy face. 

The tailor, however, was quite merry; he jumped about, 
Avhistled on a leaf, or sang a song, and thought to himself, 
" God in Heaven must be pleased to see me so happy." 

This lasted tAvo days, but on the third the forest Avould not 

come to an end, and the tailor had eaten up all his bread, so 


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after all his heart sank down a yard deeper. In the meantime, 
he did not lose courage, but relied on God and on his luck. 

On the third day, he lay down in the evening hungry under 
a tree, and rose again next morning hungry still. 

So also passed the fourth day, and when the shoemaker 
seated himself on a fallen tree and devoured his dinner, the 
tailor was only a looker-on. 

If he begged for a little piece of bread the other laughed 
mockingly, and said, " You have always been so merry, now 
you can try for once what it is to be sad. The birds which sing 
too early in the morning, are struck by the hawk in the even- 
ing," in short he was pitiless. 

But on the fifth morning, the poor tailor could no longer 
stand up, and was hardly able to utter one word for weakness. 
His cheeks were white, and his eyes red. 

Then the shoemaker said to him, " I will give you a bit of 
bread to-day, but in return for it, I will put out your right 

The unhappy tailor, who still wished to save his life, could 
not do it in any other way. He wept once more with both eyes, 
and then held them out. The shoemaker, who had a heart of 
stone, put out his right eye with a sharp knife. 

The tailor called to remembrance what his mother had 
formerly said to him when he had been eating secretly in the 
pantry, " Eat what one can, and suffer what one must." 

When he had consumed his dearly-bought bread, he got 

on his legs again, forgot his misery and comforted himself 

with the thought that he could always see enough with one 



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Bui on the sixth day, hunger made itself felt again, and 
gnawed him almost to the heart. In the evening he fell down 
by a tree, and on the seventh morning he could not raise him- 
self up for faintness, and death was close at hand. 

Then said the shoemaker, " I will show mercy and give you 
bread once more, but you shall not have it for nothing. I shall 
put out your other eye for it." 

And now the tailor felt how thoughtless his life had been, 
prayed to God for forgiveness, and said, " Do what you will, 
I will bear what I must, but remember that our Lord God does 
not always look on passively, and that an hour will come when 
the evil deed, which you have done to me and which I have not 
deserved of you, will be requited. When times were good with 
mc, I shared what I had with you. My trade is of that kind 
that each stitch must always be exactly like the other. If I no 
longer have my eyes and can sew no more, I must go a-begging. 
At any rate, do not leave me here alone when I am blind, or I 
shall die of hunger." 

The shoemaker, however, who had driven God out. of his 
heart, took the knife and put out his left eye. Then he gave 
him a bit of bread to eat, held out a stick to him, and drew him 
on behind him. 

When the sun went down, they got out of the forest, and 
before them in the open country stood the gallows. Thither 
the shoemaker guided the blind tailor, and then left him alone 
and went his way. 

Weariness, pain, and hunger made the wretched man fall 

asleep, and he slept; the whole night. When day dawned he 

awoke, but knew not where he lay. 


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Two poor sinners were hanging on the gallows, and a crow 
sat on the head of each of them. Then one of the men who had 
been hanged began to speak, and said, " Brother, are you 

" Yes, I am awake," answered the second. 

" Then I will tell you something," said the first; "the dew 
which this night has fallen down over us from the gallows, gives 
every one w r ho washes himself with it, his eyes again. If blind 
people did but know this, how many would regain their sight 
who do not believe that to be possible! " 

When the tailor heard that, he took his pocket-handkerchief, 
pressed it on the grass, and when it was moist with dew, washed 
the sockets of his eyes with it. Immediately was fulfilled what 
the man on the gallows had said, and a couple of healthy new 
eyes filled the sockets. 

It was not long before the tailor saw the sun rise behind the 
mountains. In the plain before him, lay the great royal city 
with its magnificent gates and hundred towers. The golden 
balls and crosses which were on the spires began to shine. He 
could distinguish every leaf on the trees, saw the birds which 
flew past, and the midges which danced in the air. He took a 
needle out of his pocket, and as he could thread it as well as 
ever he had done, his heart danced with delight. 

He threw himself on his knees, thanked God for the mercy 
he had shown him, and said his morning prayer. 

Then he took his bundle on his back, and soon forgot the pain 
of heart he had endured, and went on his way singing and 

The first thing he met was a brown foal running about the 


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fields at large. He caught it by the mane, and wanted to spring 
on it and ride into the town. 

The foal, however, begged to be set free, " I am still too 
young," it said, " even a light tailor such as you are would break 
my back in two — let me go till I have grown strong. A time 
may come when I can reward you for it." 

" Run off," said the tailor, " I see you are still a giddy thing." 

He gave it a touch with a switch over its back, whereupon it 
kicked up its hind legs for joy, leapt over hedges and ditches, 
and galloped away into the open country. 

But the little tailor had eaten nothing since the day before. 
" The sun to be sure fills my eyes," said he, " but the bread 
does not fill my mouth. The first thing that. comes across me 
and is even half eatable, will have to suffer for it." 

In the meantime a stork stepped solemnly over the meadow 
toward him. 

" Halt, halt!" cried the tailor, and seized him by the leg. 
" I don't know if you are good to eat or not, but my hunger 
leaves me no great choice. I must cut your head off, and roast 

"Don't do that," replied the stork; "I am a sacred bird 
which brings mankind great profit, and no one ever does me 
an injury. Leave me my life, and I may do you good in some 
other way." * 

" Well, be off, Cousin Longlegs," said the tailor. 

The stork rose up, let its long legs hang down, and flew 
gently away. 

" What's to be the end of this? " said the tailor to himself at 

last; " my hunger grows greater and greater, and my stomach 


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more and more empty. Whatsoever comes in my way now is 

At this moment, he saw a couple of young clucks which were 
on a pond, come swimming toward him. 

" You come just at the right moment," said he, and laid hold 
of one of them and was about to wring its neck. 

On this an old duck, which was hidden among the reeds, be- 
gan to scream loudly and swam to him with open beak, and 
begged him urgently to spare her dear children. 

" Can you not imagine," said she, " how your mother would 
mourn if any one wanted to carry you off, and give you your 

" Only be quiet," said the good-tempered tailor; " you shall 
keep your children," and he put the prisoner back into the 

When he turned round, he was standing in front of an old 
tree which was partly hollow, and saw some wild bees flying in 
and out of it. 

" There I shall at once find the reward of my good deed," 
said the tailor; " the honey will refresh me." 

But the Queen-Bee came out, threatened him and said, " If 
you touch my people, and destroy my nest, our stings shall 
pierce your skin like ten thousand red-hot needles. But if you 
will leave us in peace and go your way, we will do you a service 
for it another time." 

The little tailor saw that here also nothing was to be done. 
" Three dishes empty and nothing on the fourth is a bad din- 

He dragged himself therefore with his starved-out stomach 


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into the town. It was just striking twelve, all was ready- 
cooked for him in the inn, and he was able to sit down at once 
to dinner. 

When he was satisfied, he said, " Now I will get to work." 

He went round the town, sought a master, and soon found a 
good situation- As he had thoroughly learned his trade, it was 
not long before he became famous, and every one wanted to 
have a new coat made by the little tailor, whose importance 
increased daily. 

" I can go no further in skill," said he, " and yet things im- 
prove every day." 

At last the King appointed him court-tailor. 

But how things do happen in the world! On the very same 
day his former comrade, the shoemaker, also became court-shoe- 
maker. When the latter caught sight of the tailor, and saw 
that he had once more two healthy eyes, his conscience troubled 

" Before he takes revenge on me," thought he to himself, " I 
must dig a pit for him." 

He, however, who digs a pit for another, falls into it himself. 

In the evening when work was over and it had grown dusk, 
he stole to the King and said, " Lord King, the tailor is an 
arrogant fellow and has boasted that he will get the gold crown 
back again, which was lost in ancient times." 

" That would please me very much," said the King. 

He caused the tailor to be brought before him next morning, 

and ordered him to get the crown back again, or to leave the 

town for ever. 

" Oho! " thought the tailor, " a rogue gives more than he has 


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got. If the surly King wants me to do what can be done by no 
one, I will not waft till morning, but will go out of the town at 
once, to-day/' 

He packed up his bundle, but when he was without the gate, 
he could not help being sorry to give up his good fortune and 
turn his back on the town in which all had gone so well with 
him. He came to the pond where he had made the acquaintance 
of the ducks. 

At that very moment the old one whose young ones he had 
spared was sitting there by the shore, pluming herself with her 
beak. She knew him again and asked why he was hanging his 

' You will not be surprised when you hear what Has befallen 
me," replied the tailor, and told her his fate. 

" If that be all," said the duck, " we can help you. The 
crown fell into the water, and lies at the bottom. We will soon 
bring it up again for you. In the meantime just spread out 
your handkerchief on the bank." 

She dived down with her twelve young ones. And in five 
minutes she was up again with the crown resting on her wings. 
The twelve young ones were swimming round about and had 
put their beaks under it, and were helping to carry it. They 
all swam to the shore and put the crown on the handkerchief. 

No one can imagine how magnificent the crown was. When 
the sun shone on it, it gleamed like a hundred thousand car- 
buncles. The tailor tied his handkerchief together by the four 
corners, and carried it to the King, who was full of joy, and put 
a gold chain round the tailor's neck. 

When the shoemaker saw that one stroke had failed, he con- 


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trived a second, and went to the King and said, " Lord King, 
the tailor has become insolent again. He boasts that he will 
copy in wax the whole of the royal palace, with everything that 
pertains to it, loose or fast, inside and out." 

The King sent for the tailor and ordered him to copy in wax 
the whole of the royal palace, with everything that pertained 
to it, movable or immovable, within and without. And if he 
did not succeed in doing this, or if so much as one nail on the 
wall were wanting, he should be imprisoned for his whole life 
under ground. 

The tailor thought, " It gets worse and worse! No one can 
endure that I " and threw his bundle on his back, and went forth. 

When he came to the hollow tree, he sat down and hung his 
head. The bees came flying out, and the Queen-Bee asked him 
if he had a stiff neck, since he held his head so awry. 

" Alas, no," answered the tailor, " something quite different 
weighs me down," and he told her what the King had demanded 
of him. 

The bees began to buzz and hum amongst themselves, and the 
Queen-Bee said, " Just go home again. But come back to-mor- 
row at this time, and bring a large sheet with you, and then all 
will be well" 

So he turned back again, but the bees flew to the royal palace 
and straight into it through the open windows, crept round 
about into every corner, and inspected everything most care- 

Then they hurried back and modeled the palace in wax with 
such rapidity that any one looking on would have thought it 

was growing before his eyes. By the evening all was ready. 


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And wHen the tailor came next morning, the wfiole of the 
splendid building was there, and not one nail in the wall or tile 
of the roof was wanting, and it was delicate withal and white as 
snow, and smelt sweet as honey. 

The tailor wrapped it carefully in his cloth and took it to the 
King, who could not admire it enough, placed it in his largest 
hall, and in return for it presented the tailor with a large stone 

The shoemaker, however, did not give up, but went for the 
third time to the King and said, " Lord King, it has come to the 
tailor's ears that no water will spring up in the courtyard of the 
castle. He has boasted that it shall rise up in the midst of the 
courtyard to a man's height and be clear as crystal." 

Then the King ordered the tailor to be brought before him 
and said, " If a stream of water does not rise in my courtyard 
by to-morrow as you have promised, the executioner shall in 
that very place make you shorter by the head." 

The poor tailor did not take long to think about it, but 
hurried out to the gate, and because this time it was a matter 
of life and death to him, tears rolled down his face. 

Whilst he was thus going forth full of sorrow, the foal to 
which he had formerly given its liberty, and which had now 
become a beautiful chestnut horse, came leaping toward him. 

" The time has come," it said to the tailor, " when I can re- 
pay you for your good deed. I know already what is needful 
to you, but you shall soon have help. Get on me, my back can 
carry two such as you." 

The tailor's courage came back to him. He jumped up in 

one bound; and the horse went full speed into the town, and 


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rigKt up lo the courtyard of the castle. It galloped as quick as 
lightning thrice round it, and at the third time it fell violently 
clown. At the same instant there was a terrific clap of thunder, 
a fragment of earth in the middle of the courtyard sprang like 
a cannon ball into the air, and_over the castle. Directly after 
it, a jet of water rose as high as a man on horseback, and the 
water was as pure as crystal, and the sunbeams began to dance 
on it. 

When the King saw that he arose in amazement, and went 
and embraced the tailor in the sight of all men. 

But good fortune did not last long. The King had daugh- 
ters in plenty, each one prettier than the other, but he had no 

So the malicious shoemaker betook himself for the fourth 
time to the King, and said, " Lord King, the tailor has not 
given up his arrogance. He has now boasted that if he liked, 
he could cause a son to be brought to the Lord King through 
the air." 

The King commanded the tailor to be summoned, and said, 
" If you cause a son to be brought to me within nine days, you 
shall have my eldest daughter to wife." 

" The reward is indeed great," thought the little tailor. 
" One would willingly do something for it, but the cherries 
grow too high for me. If I climb for them, the bough will 
break beneath me, and I shall fall." 

He went home, seated himself cross-legged on his work- 
table, and thought over what was to be done. 

" It can't be managed," cried he at last. " I will go away. 

After all I can't live in peace here/* 


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He tied up his bundle and hurried away to the gate. When 
he got to the meadow, he perceived his old friend the stork, who 
was walking backward and forward like a philosopher. Some- 
times he stood still, took a frog into close consideration, and at 
length swallowed it down. 

The stork came to him and greeted him. " I see," he began, 
" that you have your pack on your back. Why are you leaving 
the town?" 

The tailor told him what the King had required of him, and 
how he could not perform it, and lamented his misfortune. 

" Don't let your hair grow gray about that," said the stork. 
" I will help you out of your difficulty. For a long time past, 
I have carried the children in swaddling-clothes into the town. 
So for once, I can fetch a little Prince out of the well. Go 
home and be easy. In nine days from this time repair to the 
royal palace, and there will I come." 

The little tailor went home, and at the appointed time was 
at the castle. It was not long before the stork came flying 
thither and tapped at the window. The tailor opened it, and 
Cousin Longlegs came carefully in, and walked with solemn 
steps over the smooth marble pavement. 

He had a baby in his beak that was as lovely as an angel, and 
stretched out its little hands to the Queen. The stork laid it in 
her lap, and she caressed it and kissed it, and was beside herself 
with delight. 

Before the stork flew away he took his traveling bag off his 

back and handed it over to the Queen. In it there were little 

paper parcels full of colored sweetmeats, and they were divided 

amongst the little Princesses. 


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The eldest, however, had none of them, but got the merry 
tailor for a husband. 

" It seems to me," said he, " just as if I had won the highest 
prize. My mother was right after all ; she always said that who- 
ever trusts in God and his own fortune can never fail/* 

The shoemaker had to make the shoes in which the little tailor 
daneed at the wedding festival. After which he was com- 
manded to quit the town for ever. 

The road to the forest led him to the gallows. Woru out 
with anger, rage, and the heat of the day, he threw himself 
down. When he had closed his eyes and was about to sleep, 
the two crows flew down from the heads of the men who were 
hanging there, and pecked his eyes out. 

In his madness he ran into the forest and must have died 
there of hunger, for no one has ever either seen him again or 
heard of him. 


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THERE was once an old castle in the midst of a large 
and thick forest, and in it an old woman, who was a 
Witch, dwelt all alone. 

In the daytime, she changed herself into a cat or a screecK- 
owl, but in the evening she took her proper shape again as a 
human being. She could lure wild beasts and birds to her, 
then she killed and boiled and Toasted them. 

If any one came within one hundred paces of the castle he 
was obliged to stand still, and could not stir from the place 
until she bade him be free. But whenever an innocent maiden 
came within this circle, she changed her into a bird, shut her 
up in a wicker-work cage, and carried the cage into a room in 
the castle. She had about seven thousand cages of rare birds 
in the castle. 

Now, there was once a maiden who was called Jorinda, who 
was fairer than all other girls. She and a handsome youth 
named Joringel had promised to marry each other, and their 

greatest happiness was being together. 


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One day, in order that they might be able to talk together 
in quiet, they went for a walk in the forest. 

" Take care," said Joringel, " that you do not go too near 
the castle." 

It was a beautiful evening. The sun shone brightly between 
the trunks of the trees into the dark green of the forest, and the 
turtledoves sang mournfully upon the young boughs of the 

Jorinda wept now and then. She sat down in the sunshine 
and was sorrowful. Joringel was sorrowful too. They were 
as sad as if they were about to die. Then they looked around 
them, and were quite at a loss, for they did not know by which 
way to go home. The sun was half above the mountain and 
half set. 

Joringel looked through the bushes, and saw the old walls 
of the castle close at hand. He was horror-stricken and filled 
with deadly fear. 

Jorinda was singing: 

"My little Bird, with the necklace red, 
Sings sorrow, sorrow, sorrow, 
He sings thai the Dove niwst soon be dead, 
Sings sorrow, sor jug, jug, jug!" 

Joringel looked for Jorinda. She was changed into a Night- 
ingale, and sang " jug, jug, jug! " 

A screech-owl with glowing eyes flew three times round 
about her, and three times cried, " to-ichoo, to-zchop, to-zchoo! * : 

Joringel could not move. He stood there like a stone, and 

could neither weep nor speak, nor move hand or foot* 


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The sun had now set. The owl flew into the thicket. Di- 
rectly afterward there came out of it a crooked Old Woman, 
yellow and lean, with large red eyes and a hooked nose, the 
point of which reached to her chin. She muttered to herself, 
caught the Nightingale, and took it away in her hand. 

Joringel could neither speak nor move from the spot. The 
Nightingale was gone. 

At last the woman came back, and said in a hollow voice, 
" Greet thee, Zachiel. If the moon shines on the cage, Zachiel, 
let him loose at once." 

Then Joringel was freed. He fell on his knees before the 
woman and begged that she would give him back his Jorinda. 
But she said that he should never have her again, and went 
away. He called, he wept. He lamented, but all in vain, 
" Ah, what is to become of me? " 

Joringel went away, and at last came to a strange village. 
There he kept sheep for a long time. He often walked round 
and round the castle, but not too near to it. One night he 
dreamt that he found a Blood-Red Flower, in the middle of 
which was a beautiful large pearl; that he picked the flower and 
went with it to the castle, and that everything he touched with 
the flower was freed from enchantment. He also dreamt that 
by means of it, he recovered his Jorinda. 

In the morning, when he awoke, he began to seek over hill 
and dale to find such a flower. He sought until the ninth 
day, and then, early in the morning, he found the Blood-Red 
Flower. In the middle of it, there was a large dew-drop, as big 
as the finest pearl. 

Day and night, he journeyed with this flower to the castle. 


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When he was within a hundred paces of it he was not held 
fast, but walked on to the door. 

Joringel was full of joy. He touched the door with the 
flower, and it sprang open. He walked in through the court- 
yard, and listened for the sound of the birds. At last he heard 
it. He went on, and found the room from whence it came. 
There the Witch was feeding the birds in the seven thousand 

When she saw Joringel, she was angry, very angry, and 
scolded and spat poison and gall, but she could not come within 
two paces of him. He did not take any notice of her, but went 
and looked at the cages with the birds. But there were many 
hundred Nightingales, how was he to find his Jorinda again? 

Just then he saw the Old Woman quietly take away a cage 
with a bird in it, and go toward the door. 

Swiftly he sprang toward her, touched the cage with the 
flower, and also the Old Woman. 

She could now no longer bewitch any one. And Joriuda was 
standing there, clasping him round the neck, and she was as 
beautiful as ever! 


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THERE was once a man who understood all kinds of 
arts. He served in war, and behaved well and bravely, 
but when the war was over he received his dismissal, 
and three farthings for his expenses on the way. " Stop," said 
he, " I shall not be content with this. If I can but meet with 
the right people, the King will have to give me all the treasure 
of the country." 

Then full of anger he went into the forest, and saw a man 
standing therein who had plucked up six trees as if they were 
blades of corn. He said to him, " Will you be my servant and 
go with me? " 

" Yes," he answered, " but, first, I will take this little bundle 
of sticks home to my mother," and he took one of the trees, and 
wrapped it round the five others, lifted the bundle on his back 
and carried it away. 

Then he returned and went with his master, who said, " We 
two ought to be able to get through the world very well." 

When they had walked on for a short while they found a 

huntsman who was kneeling, had shouldered his gun, and was 


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about to fire. The master said to him, " Huntsman, wKat are 
you going to shoot? " 

He answered, " Two miles from here a fly is sitting on the 
branch of an oak-tree, and I want to shoot its left eye out." 

" Oh, come with me," said the man, " if we three are to- 
gether, we certainly ought to be able to get on in the world! " 

The huntsman was ready, and went with him. 

They came to seven windmills whose sails were turning 
round with great speed, and yet no wind was blowing either 
on the right or the left, and no leaf was stirring. Then said the 
man, " I know not what is driving the windmills, not a breath 
of air is stirring," and he went onward with his servants, and 
when they had walked two miles they saw a man sitting on a 
tree, who was shutting one nostril, and blowing out of the other. 
" Good gracious! what are you doing up there? " 

He answered, " Two miles from here are seven windmills. 
Look, I am blowing them till they turn round." 

" Oh, come with me," said the man. " If we four are to- 
gether, we shall carry the whole world before us! " 

Then the blower came down and went with him. 

After a while they saw a man who was standing on one leg 
and had taken off the other, and laid it beside him. Then the 
master said, " You have arranged things very comfortably to 
have a rest." 

"lama runner," He replied, " and to stop myself running 
far too fast, I have taken off one of my legs, for if I run with 
both, I go quicker than any bird can fly." 

" Oh, come with me. If we five are together, we shall carry 

the whole world before us." 


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So He went witli them. 

It was not long before they met a man who wore a cap, but 
Had put it quite on one ear. Then the master said to him, 
" Gracefully! gracefully! don't stick your cap on one ear, you 
look just like a torn-fool! " 

" I must not wear it otherwise," said he, " for if I set my 
hat straight, a terrible frost comes on, and all the birds in the 
air are frozen, and drop dead on the ground." 

" OK, come with me," said the master. " If we six are to- 
gether, we can carry the whole world before us." 

Now the six came to a town where the King had proclaimed 
that whosoever ran a race with his daughter and won the vic- 
tory, should be her husband, but whosoever lost it, must lose his 

Then the man presented himself and said, " I will, however, 
let my servant run for me." 

The King replied, " Then his life also must be staked, so 
that his head and thine are both set on the victory." 

When that was settled and made secure, the man buckled the 
other leg on the runner, and said to him, " Now be nimble, and 
help us to win." 

It was fixed that the one who was the first to bring some 
water from a far distant well, was to be the victor. The run- 
ner received a pitcher, and the King's Daughter one too, and 
they began to run at the same time. But in an instant, when 
the King's Daughter had got a very little way, the people who 
were looking on could see no more of the runner, it was just 
as if the wind had whistled by. 

In a short time he reached the well, filled his pitcher with 


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water, and turned back. Half-way home, however, he was 
overcome with fatigue, and set his pitcher down, lay down him- 
self, and fell asleep. He had, however, made a pillow of a 
horse's skull which was lying on the ground, in order that he 
might lie uncomfortably, and soon wake up again. 

In the meantime, the King's Daughter, who could also run 
very well — quite as well as any ordinary mortal can — had 
reached the well, and was hurrying back with her pitcher full of 
water, and when she saw the runner lying there asleep, she was 
glad and said, " My enemy is delivered over into my hands/* 
emptied his pitcher, and ran on. 

And now all would have been lost if by good luck the hunts- 
man had not been standing at the top of the castle, and had 
not seen everything with his sharp eyes. Then said he, " The 
King's Daughter shall still not prevail against us." 

He loaded his gun, and shot so cleverly, that he shot the 
horse's skull away from under the runner's head without hurt- 
ing him. Then the runner awoke, leapt up, and saw that his 
pitcher was empty, and that the King's Daughter was already 
far in advance. He did not lose heart, however, but ran back 
to the well with his pitcher, again drew some water, and was 
still at home again, ten minutes before the King's Daughter. 
" Behold! " said he, " I have not bestirred myself till now. It 
did not deserve to be called running before." 

But it pained the King, and still more his daughter, that she 

should be carried off by a common disbanded soldier like that. 

So they took coimsel with each other how to get rid of him and 

his companions. 

Then said the King to her, " I have thought of a way. Don't 


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be afraid, they shall not come back again." And he said to 
them, " You shall now make merry together, and eat and 

He conducted them to a room which had a floor of iron, and 
the doors also were of iron, and the windows were guarded 
with iron bars. There was a table in the room covered with 
delicious food, and the King said to them, " Go in, and enjoy 

And when they were inside, he ordered the doors to be shut 
and bolted. Then he sent for the cook, and commanded him 
to make a fire under the room until the iron became red-hot. 
This the cook did, and the six who were sitting at table began 
to feel quite warm, and they thought the heat was caused by 
the food. But as it became still greater, and they wanted to 
get out, and found that the doors and windows were bolted, 
they became aware that the King had an evil intention, and 
wanted to suffocate them. 

" He shall not succeed, however," said the one with the cap. 
" I will cause a frost to come, before which the fire shall be 
ashamed, and creep away." 

Then he put his cap on straight, and immediately there came 
such a frost that all heat disappeared, and the food on the 
r dishes began to freeze. 

When an hour or two had passed by, and the King believed 

that they had perished in the heat, he had the doors opened to 

behold them himself. But when the doors were opened, all six 

were standing there, alive and well, and said that they should 

very much like to get out to warm themselves, for the very 

food was fast frozen to the dishes with the cold. 


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Then, full of anger, the King went down to the cook, scolded 
him, and asked why he had not done what he had been ordered 
to do. But the cook replied, " There is heat enough there, just 
look yourself." Then the King saw that a fierce fire was burn- 
ing under the iron room, and perceived that there was no get- 
ting the better of the six in this way. 

Again the King considered how to get rid of his unpleasant 
guests, and caused their chief to be brought and said, " If you 
will take gold and renounce my daughter, you shall have as 
much as you wish." 

" Oh, yes, Lord King," he answered, " give me as much as 
my servant can carry, and I will not ask for your daughter." 

On this the King was satisfied, and the other continued, " In 
fourteen days, I will come and fetch it." 

Thereupon he summoned together all the tailors in the whole 
kingdom, and they were to sit for fourteen days and sew a 
sack. And when it was ready, the strong one who could 
tear up trees had to take it on his back, and go with it to the 

Then said the King, " Who can that strong fellow be who is 
carrying a bundle of linen on his back that is as big as a 
house?" and he was alarmed and said, ".What a lot of gold 
he can carry away! " 

Then he commanded a ton of gold to be brought. It took 

sixteen of his strongest men to carry it, but the strong one 

snatched it up in one hand, put it in his sack, and said, " Why 

don't you bring more at the same time? — that hardly covers 

the bottom! " 

Then, little by little, the King caused all his treasure to be 


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brought thither, and the strong one pushed it into the sack, and 
still the sack was not half full with it. " Bring more," cried he, 
* these few crumbs don't fill it." 

Then seven thousand carts with gold had to be gathered to- 
gether in the whole kingdom, and the strong one thrust them 
and the oxen harnessed to them into his sack. " I will examine 
it no longer," said he, " but will just take what comes, so long 
as the sack is but full." 

When all that was inside, there was still room for a great 
deal more. Then he said, " I will just make an end of the 
thing. People do sometimes tie up a sack even when it is not 
full." So he took it on his back, and went away with his com- 

When the King now saw how one single man was carrying 
away the entire wealth of the country, he became enraged, and 
bade his horsemen mount and pursue the six, and ordered them 
to take the sack away from the strong one. Two regiments 
speedily overtook the six, and called out, " You are prisoners. 
Put down the sack with the gold, or you will all be cut to 
pieces! " 

" What say you? " cried the blower, " that we are prisoners! 
Rather than that should happen, all of you shall dance about 
in the air." And he closed one nostril, and with the other blew 
on the two regiments. Then they were driven away from each 
other, and carried into the blue sky over all the mountains — 
one here, the other there. 

One sergeant cried for mercy. He had nine wounds, and 

was a brave fellow who did not deserve ill-treatment. The 

blower stopped a little so that he came down without injury, 


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and then the blower said to him, " Now go home to your King, 
and tell him he had better send some more horsemen, and I 
will blow them all into the air." 

When the King was informed of this he said, " Let the 
rascals go. They have the best of it." 

Then the six conveyed the riches home, divided it amongst 
them, and lived in content until their death. 


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THERE was once upon a time, an old Queen, whose 
husband had been dead for many years, and she had 
a beautiful daughter. 

iWhen the Princess grew up, she was betrothed to a Prince 
who lived very far away. When the time came for her to be 
married, and she had to journey forth into the distant king- 
dom, the aged Queen packed up for her many costly vessels of 
silver and gold, and trinkets, also of gold and silver, and cups 
and jewels, in short, everything which appertained to a royal 
dowry, for she loved her child with all her heart. 

She likewise sent her maid-in-waiting, who was to ride with 
her, and hand her over to the Bridegroom. Each had a horse 
for the journey, but the horse of the King's Daughter was 
called Falada, and could speak. 

So when the hour of parting had come, the aged mother 

went into her bedroom, took a small knife and cut her finger 

with it until it bled. Then she held a white handkerchief to it, 

into which she let three drops of blood fall. 

She gave the handkerchief to her daughter and said, " Dear 


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Child, preserve this carefully. It will be of service to you on 
your way." 

So they took a sorrowful leave of each other. The Princess 
put the piece of cloth in her bosom, mounted her horse, and 
then went away to her Bridegroom. 

After she had ridden for a while she felt a burning thirst, 
.and said to her waiting-maid, " Dismount, and take my cup 
which you have brought with you, and get me some water from 
the stream, for I should like to drink." 

" If you are thirsty," said the waiting-maid, " get off your 
horse yourself, and lie down and drink out of the water. I 
don't choose to be your servant." 

So in her great thirst the Princess alighted, bent down over 
the water in the stream and drank, and was not allowed to 
drink out of the golden cup. Then she said, " Ah, Heaven! " 
and the three drops of blood answered: 

"// thy Mother only knew, 
'Twould surely break her heart in two!" 

But the King's Daughter was humble, said nothing, and 
mounted her horse again. 

She rode some miles further, but the day was warm, the sun 
scorched her, and she was thirsty once more. When they came 
to a stream of water, she again cried to her waiting-maid, " Dis- 
mount, and give me some water in my golden cup," for she 
had long ago forgotten the girl's ill words. 

But the waiting-maid said still more haughtily, " If you wish 

to drink, drink as you can, I don't choose to be your maid." 

Then in her great thirst the King's Daughter alighted, bent 


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over the flowing stream, wept and said, " Ah, Heaven!" and 
the drops of blood again replied: 

"If thy Mother only knew, 
'T would surely break her heart in two!' 9 

And as she was thus drinking and leaning right over the 
stream, the handkerchief with the three drops of blood fell out 
of her bosom, and floated away with the water without her 
observing it, so great was her trouble. The waiting-maid, how- 
ever, had seen it, and she rejoiced to think that she had now 
power over the Bride, for since the Princess had lost the drops 
of blood, she had become weak and powerless. 

So now, when she wanted to mount her horse again, the one 
that was called Falada, the waiting-maid said, " Falada is more 
suitable for me, and my nag will do for you," and the Princess 
had to be content with that. 

Then the waiting-maid, with many hard words, bade the 
Princess exchange her royal apparel for her own shabby 
clothes; and at length she was compelled to swear by the clear 
sk}' above her, that she would not say one word of this to any 
one at the Royal Court. And if she had not taken this oath 
she would have been killed on the spot. But Falada saw all 
this, and observed it well. 

The waiting-maid now mounted Falada, and the true Bride 
the bad horse, and thus they traveled onward, until they en- 
tered the royal palace. There were great rejoicings over her 
arrival, and the Prince sprang forward to meet her, lifted the 
waiting-maid from her horse, and thought she was his Bride. 
She was conducted up-stairs, but the real Princess was left 

standing below. 


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Then the old King looked out of the window and saw her 
standing in the courtyard, and how dainty and delicate and 
beautiful she was. He instantly went to the royal apartment^ 
and asked the Bride about the girl she had with her, who was 
standing down below in the courtyard, and who she was. 

" I picked her up on my way for a companion. Give the 
girl something to work at, that she may not stand idle." 

But the old King had no work for her, and knew of none, so 
he said, " I have a little boy who tends the geese, she may help 

The boy was called Conrad, and the true Bride had to help 
him to tend the geese. 

Soon afterward the false Bride said to the young King, 
" Dearest Husband, I beg you to do me a favor." 

He answered, " I will do so most willingly." 

" Then send for the butcher, and have the head of the horse 
on which I rode here, cut off, for it vexed me on the way." In 
reality, she was afraid that the horse might tell how she had 
behaved to the King's Daughter. 

Then she succeeded in making the King promise that it 

should be done, and the faithful Falada was to die. This came 

to the ears of the real Princess, and she secretly promised the 

butcher a piece of gold if he would perform a small service for 

her. There was a great dark-looking gateway in the town, 

through whieh, morning and evening, she had to pass with the 

geese: would he be so good as to nail up Falada's head on it, 

so that she might see him again? The butcher promised to do 

that, and cut off the head, and nailed it fast beneath the dark 



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Early in the morning, when she and Conrad drove out their 

flock beneath this gateway, she said in passing: 

"Alas, Falada, hanging there! 9 ' 

Then the head answered: 

"Alas! young Queen, how ill you fare! 
If this your tender Mother knew, 
Her heart would surely break in two!' 9 

Then they went still farther out of the town, and drove their 
geese into the country. And when they had come to the 
meadow, she sat down and unbound her hair which was like 
pure gold. Conrad saw it and delighted in its brightness, and 
wanted to pluck out a few hairs. Then she said: 

"Blow, blow, thou gentle Wind, I say, 
Blow Conrad's Utile hat away, 
And make him chase it here and there, 
Until I've braided all my hair, 
And bound it up again." 

And there came such a violent wind that it blew Conrad's hat 
far away across country, and he was forced to run after it. 

When he came back she had finished combing her hair and 
was putting it up again, and he could not get any of it. Then 
Conrad was angry, and would not speak to her. And thus they 
watched the geese until the evening, and then they went home. 
Next day when they were driving the geese out through the 
dark gateway, the maiden said: 

"Alas, Falada, hanging there!" 
Falada answered: 

"Alas! young Queen, how ill you fare! 
If this your tender Mother knew, 
Her heart would surely break in two!" 

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And she sat down again in the field and began to comb out her 
hair, Conrad ran and tried to clutch it, so she said in haste: 

"Blow, blow, thou gentle Wind, I say, 
Blow Conrad's little hat away. 
And make him chase it here and there. 
Until I've braided all my hair, 
And bound it up again." 

Then the wind blew, and blew his little hat off his head and 

far away, and Conrad was forced to run after it. When he 

came back, her hair had been put up a long time, and he could 

get none of it. So they looked after their geese till evening 


But in the evening, after they had got home, Conrad went 

to the old King, and said, " I won't tend the geese with that 

girl any longer!" 

" Why not? " inquired the old King, 

" Oh, because she vexes me the whole day long " 

Then the old King commanded him to relate what it was that 

she did to him. 

And Conrad said, " In the morning, when we pass beneath 

the dark gateway with the flock, there is a sorry horse's head 

on the wall, and she says to it: 

" 'Alas, Falada, hanging there! 9 

And the head replies: 

" 'Alas! young Queen, how ill you fare! 
If this your tender Mother knew, 
Her heart would surely break in two! 9 " 

And Conrad went on to relate what happened on the goose- 
pasture, and how when there he had to chase his hat. 


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The old King commanded him to drive his floek out again 
next day, and as soon as morning came, he placed himself be- 
hind the dark gateway, and heard how the maiden spoke to the 
head of Falada. Then he went into the country, and hid him- 
self in the thicket in the meadow. There he soon saw with his 
own eyes, the goose-girl and the goose-boy bringing their flock, 
and how after a while she sat down and unplaited her hair, 
which shone with radiance. And soon she said: 

"Blotv, bloiv, thou gentle Wind, I say, 
Blow Conrad's little hat away, 
And make him chase it here and there, 
Until I've braided all my hair, 
And bound it up again.' * 

Then came a blast of wind and carried off Conrad's hat, so tHat 
he had to run far away, while the maiden quietly went on eomb- 
ing and plaiting her hair. All of whieh the King observed. 

Then, quite unseen, he went away, and when the goose-girl 
came home in the evening, he called her aside, and asked why 
she did all these things. 

" I may not tell you that, and I dare not lament my sorrows 
to any human being, for I have sworn not to do so by the 
heaven which is above me. If I had not done that, I should 
have lost my life." 

He urged her and left her no peace, but he could draw 
nothing from her. Then said he, " If you will not tell me 
anything, tell your sorrows to the iron stove there," and he 
went away. 

Then she crept into the iron stove, and began to weep and 

lament, and emptied her whole heart, and said, " Here am I 


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deserted by the whole world, and yet I am a King's Daughter, 
and a false waiting-maid has by force brought me to such a 
pass, that I have been compelled to put off my royal apparel. 
She has taken my place with my Bridegroom, and I have to 
do the mean work of a goose-girl. 

" // my Mother only kneiv, 

'Twould surely break Iter heart in two!" 

The old King was standing outside by the pipe of the stove, 
and was listening to what she said, and heard it. Then he came 
back again, and bade her come out of the stove. And royal 
garments were placed on her, and it was marvelous how beau- 
tiful she was! The old King called his son, and revealed to 
him, that he had got the false Bride who was only, a waiting- 
maid, but that the true one was standing there, as the goose- 

The young King rejoiced with all his heart when he saw her 
beauty and youth, and a great feast was made ready to which 
all the people and all good friends were invited. At the head 
of the table sat the Bridegroom with the King's Daughter at 
one side of him, and the waiting-maid on the other, but the 
waiting-maid was blinded, and did not recognize the Princess 
in her dazzling array. 

When they had eaten and drunk, and were merry, the old 
King asked the waiting-maid as a riddle, what a person de- 
served who had behaved in such and such a way to her master, 
and at the same time related the whole story, and asked what 
sentence such a one merited? 

Then the false Bride said, " She deserves no better fate than 


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to be put in a barrel which is studded inside with pointed nails,, 
and two white horses should be harnessed to it, to drag her 
along through one street after another, till she is dead." 

" It is you," said the old King, " and you have pronounced 
your own sentence. Thus shall it be done unto you." 

And when the sentence had been carried out, the young King^ 
married his true Bride, and both of them reigned over their 
kingdom in peace and happiness. 


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THERE was once on a time, a man who was about to 
set out on a long journey. At parting he asked his 
three daughters what he should bring back for them. 

Whereupon the eldest wished for pearls, the second wished 
for diamonds, but the third said, " Dear Father, I should like 
a Singing, Soaring Lark." 

The father said, " Yes, if I can get it, you shall have it," 
kissed all three, and set out. 

Now, when the time had come for him to return Home, he 
had brought pearls and diamonds for the two eldest. But he 
had sought everywhere in vain for a Singing, Soaring Lark 
for the youngest, and he was very unhappy about it, for she 
was his favorite child. 

Then his road lay through a forest, and in the midst of it was 
a splendid castle. Near the castle stood a tree, and quite on 
the top of the tree, He saw a Singing, Soaring Lark. 

" Aha, you come just at the right moment! " he said, quite 

delighted, and called to his servant to climb up and catch the 

little creature. 


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But as he approached the tree, a Lion leapt from beneatE it, 
shook himself, and roared till the leaves on the tree trembled. 
" He who tries to steal my Singing, Soaring Lark/' he cried, 
" will I devour." 

Then the man said, " I did not know that the bird belonged 
to you* I will make amends for the wrong I have done, and 
ransom myself with a large sum of money, only spare my life." 

The Lion said, " Nothing can save you, unless you will 
promise to give me for mine own what first meets you on your 
return home. But if you will do that, I will grant you your 
life, and you shall have the bird for your daughter, into the 

The man hesitated and said, " That might be my youngest 
daughter, she loves me best, and always runs to meet me on 
my return home." 

The servant, however, was terrified and said, " Why should 
your daughter be the very one to meet you, it might as easily 
be a cat, or dog? " 

Then the man allowed himself to be persuaded, took the 
Singing, Soaring Lark, and promised to give the Lion what- 
soever should first meet him on his return home. 

When he reached home and entered his house, the first who 
met him was no other than his youngest and dearest daughter, 
who came running up, kissed and embraced him. When she 
saw that he had brought with him a Singing, Soaring Lark, 
she was beside herself with joy. 

The father, however, could not rejoice, but began to weep, 

and said, " My dearest Child, I have bought the little bird at 

a great cost! In return for it, I have been obliged to promise 


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you to a savage Lion. When he has you he will tear you in 
pieces and devour you," and he told her all, just as it had hap- 
pened, and begged her not to go thither, come what might. 

But she consoled him and said, " Dearest Father, indeed 
your promise must be fulfilled. I will go thither and soften 
the Lion, so that I may return to you safely." 

Next morning, she had the road pointed out to her, took 
leave, and went fearlessly out into the forest. The Lion, how- 
ever, was an enchanted Prince and was by day a Lion, and all 
his people were Lions with him. But in the night, they re- 
sumed their natural human shapes. 

On her arrival, she was kindly received and led into the 
castle. When night came, the Lion turned into a handsome 
man, and their wedding was celebrated with great magnifi- 
cence. They lived happily together, remained awake at night, 
and slept in the daytime. 

One day, he came and said, " To-morrow there is a feast in 
your father's house, because your eldest sister is to be married, 
and if you are inclined to go there, my Lions shall conduct 

She said, " Yes, I should very much like to see my father 
again," and went thither, accompanied by the Lions. 

There was great joy when she arrived, for they had all be- 
lieved that she had been torn in pieces by the Lion, and had 
long ceased to live. But she told them what a handsome hus* 
band she had, and how well off she was. She remained with 
them while the wedding-feast lasted, and then went back again 
to the forest. 

When the second daughter was about to be married, and 


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she was again invited to the wedding, she said to the Lion, 
" This time, I will not go alone. You must come with me." 

The Lion, however, said that it was too dangerous for him, 
for if a ray from a burning candle should fall on him, he would 
be changed into a Dove, and for seven years long would have 
to fly about with the Doves. 

She said, "Ah, but do come with me, I will take great care of 
you and guard you from all light." 

So they went away together, and took with them their little 
child as well. She had a chamber built, so strong and thick 
that no ray could pierce through it. In this he was to shut 
himself up when the candles were lit for the wedding-feast. 
But the door was made of green wood which warped and left a 
little crack which no one noticed. 

The wedding was celebrated with magnificence; but when 
the procession with all its candles and torches came back from 
church and passed by this apartment, a ray about the breadth 
of a hair fell on the King's Son. When this ray touched him, 
he was transformed in an instant. And when she came in, and 
looked for him, she did not see him, butji white Dove was sit- 
ting there. 

The Dove said to her, " For seven years must I fly about the 
world, but at every seventh step that you take I will let fall a 
drop of red blood and a white feather. These will show you 
the way. If you follow the trace j r ou can release me." 

Thereupon the Dove flew out at the door, and she followed 

him. At every seventh step a red drop of blood and a little 

white feather fell down, and showed her the way. 

So she went continually farther and farther, in the wide 

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ivorld, never looking about her nor resting, and the seven years 
were almost past. Then she rejoiced and thought that they 
would soon be delivered, and yet they were so far from it! 

Once when they were thus moving onwards, no little feather 
and no drop of red blood fell, and when she raised her eyes the 
Dove had disappeared. And as she thought to herself, " In 
this no man can help me," she climbed up to the Sun, and said 
to him, " You shine into every crevice, and over every peak, 
have you not seen a white Dove flying? " 

" No," said the Sun, " I have seen none, but I present you 
with a casket. Open it when you are in sorest need." 

Then she thanked the Sun, and went on until evening came 
and the Moon appeared. She then asked her, " You shine the 
whole night through, and on every field and forest, have you 
not seen a white Dove flying? " 

" No," said the Moon, " I have seen no Dove, but here I give 
you an egg. Break it when you are in great need." 

She thanked the Moon, and went on until the Night Wind 
came up and blew on her, then she said to it, " You blow over 
every tree and under every leaf, have you not seen a white 
Dove flying? " 

" No," said the Night Wind, " I have seen none, but I will 
ask the three other Winds; perhaps they have seen it." 

The East Wind and the West Wind came, and had seen 

nothing, but the South Wind said, " I have seen the white 

Dove, it has flown to the Red Sea, there it has become a Lion 

again, for the seven years are over. The Lion is there fighting 

with a Dragon. The Dragon, however, is an enchanted 



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The Night Wind then said to her, " I will advise you. Go 
to the Red Sea, on the right bank are some tall reeds, count 
them, break off the eleventh, and strike the Dragon with it. 
Then the Lion will be able to subdue it, and both then will re- 
gain their human form. After that, look round and you will 
see the Griffin which is by the Red Sea. Swing yourself with 
your beloved, on to his back, and the bird will carry you over 
the sea to your own home. 

" Here is a nut for you, when you are above the centre of 
the sea, let the nut fall. It will immediately shoot up, and a 
tall nut-tree will grow out of the water on which the Griffin 
may rest; for if he cannot rest, he will not be strong enough to 
carry you across. If you forget to throw down the nut, he will 
let you fall into the sea." 

Then she went thither, and found everything as the Night 
Wind had said. She counted the reeds by the sea, and cut off 
the eleventh, struck the Dragon with it, whereupon the Lion 
overcame it. Immediately both of them regained their human 
shapes. But when the Princess, who had been the Dragon, 
was delivered from enchantment, she took the youth by the 
arm, seated herself on the Griffin, and carried him off with 

There stood the poor maiden, who had wandered so far and 
was again forsaken! She sat down and cried, but at last she 
took courage and said, " Still I will go as far as the Wind 
blows and as long as the cock crows, until I find him." 

She went forth by long, long roads, until at last she came 

to the castle, where both of them were living together. There 

she heard that a feast was to be held, in which they would eele- 


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brate their wedding, but she said, " God still helps me," and 
opened the casket that the Sun had given her. A dress lay 
therein as brilliant as the sun itself. 

So she took it out and put it on, and went up into the castle, 
and every one, even the Bride, looked at her with astonish- 
ment. The dress pleased the Bride so well that she thought it 
might do for her wedding-dress, and asked if it was for sale? 

" Not for money or land," answered she, " but for flesh and 

The Bride asked her what she meant by that, then she said, 
" Let me sleep a night in the chamber where the Bridegroom 

The Bride would not, yet wanted very much to have the 
dress* At last she consented, but the page was to give the 
Prince a sleeping-draught. 

When it was night, and the youth was already asleep, she 
was led into the chamber. She seated herself on the bed and 
said, " I have followed you for seven years. I have been to 
the Sun and the Moon, and the Four Winds, and have in- 
quired for you and have helped you against the Dragon. Will 
you, then, forget me? " 

But the Prinee slept so soundly that it only seemed to him 
as if the wind were whistling outside in the fir-trees. When 
therefore day broke, she was led out again, and had to give up 
the golden dress. And as that had been of no avail, she was 
sad, went out into a meadow, sat down there, and wept. 

While she was sitting there, she thought of the egg which the 

Moon had given her. She opened it, and there came out a 

clucking hen with twelve chiekens all of gold. They ran about 


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cfilrplng, anil crept again under the old hen's wings. Nothing 
more beautiful was ever seen in the world! 

She arose, and drove them through the meadow. The Bride 
looked out of the window, and the little chickens pleased her so 
that she came down and asked if they were for sale. 

" Not for money or land, but for flesh and blood. Let me 
sleep again in the chamber where the Bridegroom sleeps." 

The Bride said, " Yes," intending to cheat her as on the 
former evening. But when the Prince went to bed he asked the 
page what the murmuring and rustling in the night had been. 
On this the page told all ; that he had been forced to give him 
a sleeping-draught, because a poor girl had slept secretly in 
the chamber, and that he was to give him another that night. 

The Prince said, " Pour out the draught by the bedside." 

At night, she was again led in, and when she began to relate 
how ill all had fared with her, he immediately recognized his 
beloved wife by her voice, sprang up and cried, " Now I really 
am released ! I have been as it were in a dream, for the strange 
Princess has bewitched me so that I have been compelled to 
forget you ! But God has delivered me from the spell at the 
right time." 

Then they both left the castle secretly in the night, for they 

feared the father of the Princess, who was a sorcerer. They 

seated themselves on the Griffin which bore them across the 

Red Sea. When they were in the midst of it, she let fall the 

nut. Immediately a tall nut-tree grew up, whereon the bird 

rested, and then carried them home, where they found their 

child, who had grown tall and beautiful. 

And they lived thenceforth happily until their death. 


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THERE was once on a time, a poor peasant called Crab, 
who drove two oxen with a load of wood to town, and 
sold it to a doctor for two dollars. 

When the money was being counted out to him, it so hap- 
pened that the doctor was sitting at table, and when the 
peasant saw how daintily he ate and drank, his heart desired 
what he saw, and he would willingly have been a doctor. So 
he remained standing a while, and at length inquired if he, too, 
could not be a doctor. 

" Oh, yes," said the doctor, " that is soon managed." 

" What must I do? " asked the peasant. 

" In the first place, buy yourself an A B C book of the kind 
which has a cock on the frontispiece. In the second, turn your 
cart and your two oxen into money, and get yourself some 
clothes, and whatsoever else pertains to medicine. Thirdly, 
have a sign painted with the words, ' I am Doctor Knowall, 5 
and have that nailed up above your house-door. 55 

The peasant did everything that he had been told to do. 

When he had doctored people a while, but not long, a rich and 


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great lord had some money stolen. Then he was told about 
Doctor Knowall who lived in such and such a village, and must 
know what had become of the money. So the lord had the 
horses put in his carriage, drove out to the village, and asked 
Crab if he were Doctor Knowall? 

Yes, he was, he said. 

Then he was to go with him and bring back the stolen money. 

" Oh, yes, but Grethe, my wife, must go too." 

The lord was willing, and let both of them have a seat in the 
carriage. They all drove away together. When they came to 
the nobleman's castle, the table was spread, and Crab was told 
to sit down and eat. 

" Yes, but my wife, Grethe, too," said he, and he seated 
himself with her at the table. 

And when the first servant came with a dish of delicate fare, 
the peasant nudged his wife, and said, " Grethe, that was the 
first," meaning that was the servant who brought the first 

The servant, however, thought he intended by that to say,. 
" That is the first thief," and as he actually was so, he was 
'terrified, and said to his comrade outside, " The doctor knows 
all! we shall fare badly; he said I was the first." 

The second did not want to go in at all, but was obliged to- 
So when he went in, the peasant nudged his wife, and said,. 
" Grethe, that is the second." This servant was so frightened, 
that he got out. 

With the third, it did not fare any better, for the peasant 

said again, " Grethe, that is the third." 

The fourth had to carry in a covered dish. In it were crabs. 


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The lord told the doctor that he must show his skill by guessing 
what was under the twer. The doctor looked at the dish, had 
no idea what was in it, and cried out, " Alasl poor Crab! " 

When the lord heard that, he cried, " There! he knows who 
has the money!" 

At this, the servants were terribly anxious. They winked at 
the doctor to come out to them. When he went out, they all 
four confessed that they had stolen the money, and that they 
were willing to restore it. They led him to the spot where it 
was hidden. 

Thus the lord got back his wealth, and Doctor Knowall re* 
ceived a large reward and became a famous man. 


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THERE was once on a time, a soldier who for many 
years had served the King faithfully. But when the 
war came to an end he could serve no longer because 
of the many wounds which he had received. 

The King said to him, " You may return to your home, I 
need you no longer. You will not receive any more money, 
for only he receives wages who renders me service for 

Then the soldier did not know how to earn a living, went 
away greatly troubled, and walked the whole day, until in the 
evening he entered a forest. When darkness came on, he saw 
a light, which he went toward, and came to a house wherein 
lived a Witch. 

" Do give me one night's lodging, and a little to eat and 
drink," said he to her, " or I shall starve." 

" Oho!" she answered, "who gives anything to a runaway 

soldier? Yet will I be compassionate, and take you in, if you 

will do what I wish.'* 

" What do you wish? " said the soldier, 


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" That you should dig all round ray garden for me, to-mor* 


The soldier consented, and next day labored with all His 
strength, but could not finish it by the evening. 

" I see well enough," said the Witch, " that you can 'do no 
more to-day. But I will keep you yet another night, in pay- 
ment for which you must to-morrow chop me a load of wood, 
and make it small." 

The soldier spent the whole day in doing it, and in the even- 
ing the Witch proposed that he should stay one night more. 
" To-morrow, you shall do me a very trifling piece of work. 
Behind my house, there is an old, dry well, into which my light 
has fallen. It burns blue, and never goes out, and you shall 
bring it up again for me." 

Next day, the Old Woman took him to the well, and let him 
down in a basket. He found the Blue Light, and made her a 
signal to draw him up again. She did draw him up, but when 
he came near the edge, she stretched down her hand and wanted 
to take the Blue Light away from him. 

" No," said he, perceiving her evil intention, " I will not 
give you the light, until I am standing with both feet upon the 

The Witch fell into a passion, let him down again into .the 
well, and went away. 

The poor soldier fell without injury on the moist ground, 

and the Blue Light went on burning. But of what use was 

that to him? He saw very well that he could not escape death. 

He sat for a while very sorrowfully, then suddenly he felt in 

his pocket and found his pipe, which was still half full of to- 


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bacco, " This shall be my last pleasure," thought he, pulled 
it out, lit it at the Blue Light and began to smoke. 

When the smoke had circled about the cavern, suddenly a 
little Black Man stood before him, and said, " Master, what 
are your commands? " 

' What commands have I to give you? " replied the soldier, 
quite astonished. 

" I must do everything you bid me," said the Little Man. 

" Good/' said the soldier; " then in the first place help me 
out of this well." 

The Little Man took him by the hand, and led him through 
an underground passage, but the soldier did not forget to take 
the Blue Light with him. On the way the Little Man showed 
him treasures hidden there, and the soldier took as much gold as 
he could carry. 

When he was above, he said to the Little Man, " Now go 
and bind the old Witch, and carry her before the judge." 

In a short time she, with frightful cries, came riding by, as 
swift as the wind, on a wild tom-cat, nor was it long after that 
before the Little Man reappeared. " It is all done," said he, 
" and the Witch is already hanging on the gallows. What 
further commands has my lord? " inquired the Little Man. 

"At this moment, none," answered the soldier; "you may 
return home. Only be at hand immediately, if I summon you." 

" Nothing more is needed than that you should light your 
pipe at the Blue Light, and I will appear before you at once." 
Thereupon he vanished from sight. 

The soldier returned to the town from which he Had come. 
He went to the best inn, ordered himself handsome clothes, 


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and then bade the landlord furnish him a room as magnificent 
as possible. 

When it was ready apd the soldier had taken possession of 
it, he summoned the Little Black Man and said, " I have served 
the King faithfully, but he has dismissed me, and left me to 
hunger, and now I want to punish him." 

" What am I to clo? " asked the Little Man. 

" Late at night, when the King's Daughter is in bed, bring 
her here in her sleep; she shall do servant's work for me." 

The Little Man said, " That is an easy thing for me to do, 
but a very dangerous thing for you, for if it is discovered, you 
will fare ill." 

When twelve o'clock had struck, the door sprang open, and 
the Little Man carried in the Princess. 

" Aha! are you there? " cried the soldier, " get to your work 
at once! Fetch the broom and sweep the chamber." 

When she had done this, he ordered her to come to his chair. 
Then he stretched out his feet and said, " Pull off my boots for 
me," and made her pick them up again, and clean and brighten 

She, however, did everything he bade her, without opposi- 
tion, silently and with half-shut eyes. When the first cock 
crowed, the Little Man carried her back to the royal Palace, 
and laid her in her bed. 

Next morning, when the Princess arose, she went to her fa- 
ther, and told him that she had had a very strange dream, " I 
was carried through the streets with the rapidity of lightning," 
said she, " and taken into a soldier's room, and I had to wait 

upon him like a servant, sweep his room, clean his boots, and 


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do all kinds of menial work* It was only a dream, and yet I 
am just as tired as if I really had done everything." 

" The dream may have been true," said the King, " I will 
give you a piece of advice. Fill your pocket full of peas, and 
make a small hole in it, and then if you are carried away again, 
they will fall out and leave a track in the streets." 

But unseen by the King, the Little Man was standing be- 
side him when he said that, and heard all. At night, when the 
sleeping Princess was again carried through the streets, some 
peas certainly did fall out of her pocket, but they made no 
track, for the crafty Little Man had just before scattered peas 
in every other street. And again the Princess was compelled 
to do servant's work until cock-crow. 

Next morning, the King sent his people out to seek the track, 
but it was all in vain, for in every street poor children were 
sitting, picking up peas, and saying, " It must have rained 
peas, last night." 

" We must think of something else," said the King; " keep 
your shoes on when you go to bed, and before you come back 
from the place where you are taken, hide one of them there. 
I will soon find it." 

The Little Black Man heard this plot, and at night when 
the soldier again ordered him to bring the Princess, revealed it 
to him, and told him that he knew of no way to overcome this 
stratagem, and that if the shoe were found in the soldier's house 
it would go badly with him. 

" Do what I bid you," replied the soldier. And again this 

third night, the Princess was obliged to work like a servant, but 

before she went away, she hid her shoe under the bed. 


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Next morning, the King had the entire town searched for 
his daughter's shoe. It was found at the soldier's, and the 
soldier himself, who at the entreaty of the Little Man, had gone 
outside the city-gate, was soon brought back, and thrown into 

In his flight he had forgotten the most valuable things he 
had, the Blue Light and the gold, and had only one ducat in his 
pocket And now loaded with chains, he was standing at the 
window of his dungeon, when he chanced to see one of his 
comrades passing by. 

The soldier tapped at the pane of glass, and when this man 
came up, said to him, " Be so kind as to fetch me the small 
bundle I have left lying in the inn, and I will give you a ducat 
for doing it." 

His comrade ran thither and brought him what he wanted. 
As soon as the soldier was alone again, he lighted his pipe and 
summoned the Little Black Man. 

" Have no fear," said the latter to his master. " Go where- 
soever they take you, and let them do what they will, only take 
the Blue Light with you." 

Next day the soldier was tried, and though he had done 
nothing wicked, the judge condemned him to death. When he 
was led forth to die, he begged a last favor of the King. 

" What is it? " asked the King. 

" That I may smoke one more pipe on my way." 

" You may smoke three," answered the King, " but do not 
imagine that I will spare your life." 

Then the soldier pulled out his pipe and lighted it at the 

Blue Light. And as soon as a few wreaths of smoke had as- 


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cended the Little Man was there with a small cudgel in his 
hand, and said, " What does my lord command? " 

" Strike down to earth that false judge there, and his 
constable, and spare not the King who has treated me so 

Then the Little Man fell on them like lightning, darting 
this way and that, and whosoever was so much as touched by 
his cudgel fell to earth, and did not venture to stir again. The 
King was terrified; he threw himself on the soldier's mercy, 
and begged merely to be allowed to live. He gave him his 
kingdom for his own, and the Princess to wife. 


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THERE was once a girl whose father and mother died 
while she was still a little child. All alone, in a small 
house at the end of the village, dwelt her godmother, 
who supported herself by spinning, weaving, and sewing. The 
old woman took the forlorn child to live with her, kept her to 
her work, and educated her in all that is good. 

When the girl was fifteen, the old woman became ill, 
called the child to her bedside, and said, " Dear Daughter, 
I feel my end drawing near. I leave you the little house, 
which will protect you from wind and weather, and my 
spindle, shuttle, and needle, with which you can earn your 

Then she laid her hands on the girl's head, blessed her, and 
said, " Only preserve the love of God in your heart, and all will 
go well with you." 

Thereupon she closed her eyes, and when she was laid in the 

earth, the maiden followed the coffin, weeping bitterly, and 

paid her the last mark of respect. 


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And now the maiden lived quite alone in the little house, 
and was industrious, and span, wove, and sewed, and the bless- 
ing of the good old woman was on all that she did. It seemed 
as if the flax in the room increased of its own accord, and when- 
ever she wove a piece of cloth or carpet, or had made a shirt, 
she at once found a buyer who paid her amply for it. So that 
she was in want of nothing, and even had something to share 
with others. 

About this time, the Son of the King was traveling about 
the country looking for a Bride. He was not to choose a poor 
one, and did not want to have a rich one. So he said, " She 
shall be my wife who is the poorest, and at the same time the 

When he came to the village where the maiden dwelt, he in- 
quired, as he did wherever he Avent, who was the richest and 
also the poorest girl in the place? They first named the richest; 
the poorest, they said, was the girl who lived in the small house 
quite at the end of the village. 

The rich girl was sitting in all her splendor before the door 
of her house, and when the Prince approached her, she got up, 
went to meet him, and made him a low curtsey. He looked at 
her, said nothing, and rode on. 

When he came to the house of the poor girl, she was not 
standing at the door, but sitting in her little room. He stopped 
his horse, and saw, through the window on which the bright sun 
was shining, the girl sitting at her spinning-wheel, busily spin- 
ning. She looked up, and when she saw that the Prince was 
gazing in, blushed all over her face, let her eyes fall, and 

went on spinning. I do not know whether, just at that mo- 


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ment, the thread was quite even; but she went on spinning 
until the King's Son had ridden away again. 

Then she stepped to the window, opened it, and said, " It is 
so warm in this room! " but she still looked after him as long as 
she could see the white feathers in his hat. Then she sat down 
to work again in her own room and went on with her spinning. 
And a saying which the old woman had often repeated when 
she was sitting at her work, came into her mind, and she sang 
these words to herself: 

"Spindle, my Spindle, haste, haste thee away, 
Here to my house bring the wooer, I pray." 

And what do you think happened? The spindle sprang out of 
her hand in an instant, and out of the door. And when, in her 
astonishment, she got up and looked after it, she saw that it 
was dancing out merrily into the open country, and drawing a 
shining golden thread after it. Before long, it had entirely 
vanished from her sight. 

As she had now no spindle, the girl took the weaver's shuttle 
in her hand, sat down to her loom, and began to weave. 

The spindle, however, danced continually onward, and just 
as the thread came to an end, reached the Prince. 

" What do I see? " he cried; " the spindle certainly wants to 
show me the way! " He turned his horse about, and rode back 
with the golden thread. The girl was, however, sitting at her 
work singing: 

"Shuttle, my Shuttle, weave well this day, 
And guide the wooer to me, I pray." 

Immediately the shuttle sprang out of her hand and out by the 


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door. Before the threshold, however, it began to weave a car- 
pet which was more beautiful than the eyes of man had ever 
yet beheld. Lilies and roses blossomed on both sides of it. 
And on a golden ground in the centre green branches ascended, 
under which bounded hares and rabbits. Stags and deer 
stretched their heads in between them. Brightly-colored birds 
were sitting in the branches above. They lacked nothing but 
the gift of song. The shuttle leapt hither and thither, and 
everything seemed to grow of its own accord. 

As the shuttle had run away, the girl sat down to sew. She 
held the needle in her hand and sang: 

"Needle, my Needle, sharp-pointed and fine, 
Prepare for a wooer this house of mine." 

Then the needle leapt out of her fingers, and flew everywhere 
about the room as quick as lightning. It was just as if in- 
visible spirits were working. They eovered tables and benches 
with green cloth in an instant, and the chairs with velvet, and 
hung the windows with silken curtains. 

Hardly had the needle put in the last stitch, than the maiden 
saw through the window the white feathers of the Prince, whom 
the spindle had brought thither by the golden thread. He 
alighted, stepped over the carpet into the house, and when he 
entered the room, there stood the maiden in her poor garments, 
but she shone out from them like a rose surrounded by leaves. 

" You are the poorest and also the richest," said he to her. 

41 Come with me, you shall be my Bride." 

^ She did not speak, but she gave him her hand. Then he 

kissed her, and led her forth, lifted her on to his horse, and 


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took her to the royal castle, where the wedding was solemnized 
with great rejoicings. 

The spindle, shuttle, and needle were preserved in the treas- 
ure-chamber, and held in great honor. 


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7n* l 



■1 n) 






A FATHER once called his three sons before him. He 
gave to the first a cock, to the second a scythe, and to 
the third a cat. 

" I am old," said he, " my death is nigh, and I have wished 
to take thought for you before my end. Money I have not, 
and what I now give you seems of little worth. But all depends 
on your making a sensible use of it. Only seek out a country 
where such things are still unknown, and your fortune is 

After the father's death, the eldest went away with his cock* 
But wherever he came the cock was already known. In the 
towns, he saw him from a long distance, sitting upon the 
steeples and turning round with the wind; and in the villages he 
heard more than one crowing. No one would show any wonder 
at the creature, so that it did not look as if he would make his 
fortune by it. 

At last, however, it happened that he came to an island where 
the people knew nothing about cocks, and did not even under- 
stand how to tell time. They certainly knew when it was morn- 


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ing or evening. But at night, if they did not sleep through it, 
not one of them knew how to find out the time. 

" Look! " said he, " what a proud creature! It has a ruby- 
red crown upon its head, and wears spurs like a knight. It 
calls you three times during the night, at fixed hours; and when 
it calls for the last time, the sun soon after rises. But if it 
crows by broad daylight, then take notice, for there will cer- 
tainly be a change of weather." 

The people were well pleased. For a whole night they did 
not sleep, and listened with great delight as the cock at two, 
four, and six o'clock, loudly and clearly proclaimed the time. 
They asked if the creature were for sale, and how much he 
wanted for it. 

" About as much gold as an ass can carry," answered he. 

" A ridiculously small price for such a precious creature!" 
they cried all together, and willingly gave him what he had 

When he came home with his wealth, his brothers were as- 
tonished, and the second said, " Well, I will go forth and see 
whether I cannot get rid of my scythe as profitably." But it 
did not look as if he would, for laborers met him everywhere, 
and they had scythes upon their shoulders as well as he. 

At last, however, he chanced upon an island where the peo- 
ple knew nothing of scythes. When the corn was ripe, they 
took cannon out to the fields and shot it down. Now this was 
rather an uncertain affair. Many shot right over it, others hit 
the ears instead of the stems and shot them away, whereby much 
was lost; and besides all this it made a terrible noise. 

So the man set to work and mowed it down so quietly and 


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quickly that the people opened their mouths with astonishment 
They agreed to give him what he wanted for the scythe, and he 
received a horse laden with as much gold as it could carry. 

And now the third brother wanted to take his cat to the right 
man. He fared just like the others. So long as he stayed on 
the mainland, there was nothing to be done. Every place had 
cats, and there were so many of them that most new-born kit- 
tens were drowned in the ponds. 

At last, he sailed to an island, and it luckily happened that 
no cats had ever yet been seen there, and that the mice had got 
the upper hand so much, that they danced upon the tables and 
benches whether the master were at home or not. The people 
complained bitterly of the plague. The King himself, in his 
palace, did not know how to secure himself against them. Mice 
squeaked in every corner, and gnawed whatever they could lay 
hold of with their teeth. 

But now the cat began her chase, and soon cleared a couple 
of rooms, and the people begged the King to buy the wonder- 
ful beast for the country. The King willingly gave what was 
asked, which was a mule laden with gold ; and the third brother 
came home with the greatest treasure of all. 

The cat made merry with the mice in the royal palace, and 
killed so many that they could not be counted. At last she 
grew warm with the work and thirsty, so she stood still, lifted 
up her head and cried, " Mew! mew! " 

When they heard this strange cry, the King and all his peo- 
ple were frightened, and in their terror ran out of the palace. 

Then the King took counsel what was best to be done. At 

last, it was decided to send a herald to the cat, and command 


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her to leave the palace; if not, she was to expect that force 
would be used against hen 

The councilors said, " We would rather be plagued with mice 
to which misfortune we are accustomed, than give up our lives 
to such a monster as this." 

A noble youth, therefore, was sent to ask the cat whether she 
" would peaceably quit the palace." But the cat, whose thirst 
had become still greater, answered again, " Mew! Mew! " 

The youth thought that she said, " Most certainly not! 
Most certainly not! " and took this answer to the King. 

" Then," said the councilors, " she must yield to force." 

Cannon were brought out, and the palace was soon in flames. 
When the fire reached the room where the cat was sitting, she 
sprang safely out of the window. But the besiegers did not 
leave off, until the whole palace was shot down to the ground. 


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THERE was once a young huntsman, who went into the 
forest to lie in wait. He had a fresh and joyous heart, 
and as he was going thither, whistling upon a leaf, an 
ugly old crone came up, who spoke to him and said, " Good- 
day, dear huntsman, truly you are merry and contented, but I 
am suffering from hunger and thirst, do give me an alms." 

The huntsman had compassion on the poor old creature, felt 
in his pocket, and gave her what he could afford. 

He was then about to go further, but the old woman stopped 
him and said, " Listen, dear Huntsman, to what I tell you. I 
will make you a present in return for your kindness. Go on 
your way now, but in a little while you will come to a tree, 
whereon nine birds are sitting which have a cloak in their claws, 
and are plucking at it. Take your gun and shoot into the 
midst of them. They will let the cloak fall down to you, but 
one of the birds will be hurt, and will drop dead. 

" Carry away the cloak, it is a Wishing-Cloak. When you 

throw it over your shoulders, you only have to wish to be in a 

certain place, and you will be there in the twinkling of an eye. 


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Take out the heart of the dead bird, swallow it whole, and every 
morning early, when you get up, you will find a gold piece 
under your pillow." 

The huntsman thanked the Wise Woman, and thought to 
himself, "Those are fine things that she-has promised me, if 
all does but come true! " 

And verily when he had walked about a hundred paces, he 
heard in the branches aboA r e him a screaming and twittering. 
He looked up and saw a crowd of birds, who were tearing a 
piece of cloth Avith their beaks and claws, and tugging and 
fighting as if each wanted to have it all to himself. 

' Well," said the huntsman, " this is wonderful. It has come 
to pass just as the old wife foretold !" and he took the gun 
from his shoulder, aimed and fired right into the midst of them, 
so that the feathers fleAV about. 

The birds instantly took to flight with loud outcries, but one 
dropped down dead, and the cloak fell at the same time. Then 
the huntsman did as the old woman had directed him, cut open 
the bird, sought the heart, swallowed it down, and took the 
cloak home with him. 

Next morning, when he awoke, the promise occurred to him. 
He wished to see if it also had been fulfilled. When he lifted 
up the pillow, the gold piece shone in his eyes. The next day, 
he found another, and so it went on, every time he got up. He 
gathered together a heap of gold, but at last he thought, " Of 
Avhat use is all my gold to me if I stay at home? I will go 
forth and see the world." 

He then took leave of his parents, buckled on his huntsman's 

pouch and gun, and went out into the world. 


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It came to pass, that one day he traveled through a dense 
forest, and when he came to the end of it, in the plain before 
him was a fine castle. An Old Woman was standing with a 
wonderfully beautiful maiden, looking out of one of the win- 
dows . 

The Old Woman, however, was a Witch and said to the 
maiden, " There comes a man out of the forest, who has a 
wonderful treasure in his body. ^ We must filch it from him, 
my dear Daughter. It is more suitable for us than for him. 
He has a bird's heart about him, by means of which every morn- 
ing, a gold piece lies under his pillow." She told her what she 
was to do to get it, and what part she had to play, and finally 
threatened her, and said with angry eyes, " And if you do not 
attend to what I say, it will be the worse for you," 

Now when the huntsman came nearer he descried the 
maiden, and said to himself, " I have traveled about for such 
a long time, I will take a rest for once, and enter that beautiful 
castle. I have certainly money enough." Nevertheless, the 
real reason was that he had caught sight of the pretty maiden. 

He entered the house, and was well received and courteously 
entertained. Before long, he was so much in love with the 
young Witch that he no longer thought of anything else, and 
saw things as she saw them, and did what she desired. 

The Old Woman then said, " Now we must have the bird's 
heart, he will never miss it," She prepared a drink, and when 
it was ready, poured it into a cup and gave it to the maiden, 
who was to present it to the huntsman. 

She did so, saying, " Now, my Dearest, drink to me." 

So he took the cup, and when he had swallowed the 


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draught, he brought up the heart of the bird. The girl had to 
take it away secretly and swallow it herself, for the Old 
Woman would have it so. Thenceforward he found no more 
gold under his pillow. But it lay instead under that of the 
maiden, from whence the Old Woman fetched it away every 
morning. But he was so much in love and so befooled, that he 
thought of nothing else but of passing his time with the 

Then the old Witch said, " We have the bird's heart, but we 
must also take the Wishing-Cloak away from him." 

The maiden answered, " We will leave him that; he has lost 
his wealth." 

The Old Woman was angry and said, " Such a mantle is a 
wonderful thing, and is seldom to be found in this world. I 
must and will have it!" She gave the maiden several blows, 
and said that if she did not obey, it should fare ill with her. 

So she did the Old Woman's bidding, placed herself at the 
window and looked on the distant country, as if she were very 

The huntsman asked, " Why do you stand there so sorrow- 

" AH, my Beloved," was her answer, " over yonder lies the 
Garnet Mountain, where the precious stones grow. I long for 
them so much that when I think of them, I feel quite sad, but 
who can get them? Only the birds; they fly and can reach 
them, but a man never." 

"Have you nothing else to complain of?" said the hunts- 
man. " I will soon remove that burden from your heart." 

With* that he drew her under his mantle, wished himself on 


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the Uarnet Mountain. In the twinkling of an eye they were 
sitting on it together. Precious stones were glistening on every 
side, so that it was a joy to see them. Together they gathered 
the finest and costliest of them. 

Now, the Old Woman had, through Her sorceries, contrived 
that the eyes of the huntsman should become heavy. He said 
to the maiden, " We will sit down and rest a while. I am so 
tired, that I can no longer stand on my feet." 

Then they sat down, and he laid his head in her lap, and fell 
asleep. WKen he was asleep, she unfastened the mantle from 
his shoulders, and wrapped herself in it, picked up the garnets 
and stones, and wished herself back at home with them. 

But when the huntsman had had his sleep out, he awoke, and 
perceived that his sweetheart had betrayed him, and left him 
alone on the wild mountain. Then he said, " Oh, what treach- 
ery there is in the world!" and sat there in care and sorrow, 
not knowing what to do. 

But the mountain belonged to some wild and monstrous 
Giants, who dwelt thereon and lived their lives there, and he 
had not sat long, before he saw three of them coming toward 
him. The Giants came up, and the first kicked him with his 
foot and said, " What sort of an earthworm is lying curled up 

The second said, " Step upon him and kill him." 

But the third said, " Would that be worth your while? Let 
him live, he cannot remain here. When he climbs higher, to- 
ward the summit of the mountain, the clouds will lay hold of 
him and bear him away." So saying they passed by. 

But the Huntsman had paid heed to their words, and as soon 


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as they were gone, he rose and climbed up to the summit of the 
mountain. And when he had sat there a while, a cloud floated 
toward him, caught him up, carried him away, and traveled 
about for a long time in the heavens. Then it sank lower, and 
let itself down on a great cabbage-garden, girt round by walls, 
so that he came softly to the ground on cabbages and vege- 

Then the huntsman looked about him, and said, " If I only 
had something to eat I I am so hungry, and my hunger will 
grow greater. But I see here neither apples nor pears, nor 
any other sort of fruit, everywhere there is nothing but cab- 
bages/' At length he thought, "At a pinch I can eat some of 
the leaves. They do not taste particularly good, but they will 
refresh me." 

With that he picked himself out a fine head of cabbage, and 
ate it. But scarcely had he swallowed a couple of mouthfuls, 
when wonderful! he felt quite changed. 

Four legs grew on him, a large head and two thick ears; and 
he saw with horror that he was changed into a Donkey. Still 
as his hunger became greater every minute, and as the juicy 
leaves were suitable to his present nature, he went on eating 
with great zest. At last he arrived at a different kind of cab- 
bage, but as soon as he had swallowed it, he again felt a change, 
and resumed his human shape. 

Then the huntsman lay down, and slept off his fatigue. 

When he awoke next morning, he broke off one head of the 

bad cabbages and another of the good ones, and thought to 

himself, " This shall help me to get my own again and punish 



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Then he took the cabbages with him, climbed over tlie wall, 
and went forth to seek for the castle of his sweetheart. 

After wandering about for a couple of days, he was lucky 
enough to find it again. He dyed his face brown, so that his 
own mother would not have known him ; and begged for shel- 
ter. " I am so tired," said he, " that I can go no further." 

The Witch asked, " Who are you, Countryman, and what 
is your business? " 

Said he, " I have been so fortunate as to find the most won- 
derful salad which grows under the sun, and am carrying it 
about with me." 

When the Old Woman heard of the exquisite salad, she was 
greedy, and said, " Dear Countryman, let me just taste this 
wonderful salad." 

" Why not? " answered he, " I have brought two heads with 
me, and will give you one of them," and he opened his pouch 
and handed her the bad cabbage. 

The Witch suspected nothing amiss, and her mouth watered 
so for this new dish, that she herself went into the kitchen and 
prepared it. When it was ready she could not wait until it was 
set on the table, but took a couple of leaves at once, and put 
them in her mouth. Hardly had she swallowed them, than she 
was deprived of her human shape, and she ran out into the 
courtyard in the form of a Donkey. 

Presently the maid-servant entered the kitchen, saw the 

salad standing there ready prepared, and was about to carry 

it up. But on the way, according to habit, she was seized by 

the desire to taste, and she ate a couple of leaves. Instantly 

the magic power showed itself, and she likewise became a 


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Donkey, and ran out to the Old Woman. And the dish of 
salad fell to the ground. 

Meantime the huntsman sat beside the beautiful maiden, 
and as no one came with the salad and she also was long- 
ing for it, she said, " I don't know what has become of the 

The huntsman thought, " The salad must have already 
taken effect," and said, " I will go to the kitchen and inquire 
about it." 

As he went down he saw the two Donkeys running about in 
the courtyard. The salad, however, was lying on the ground* 
" All right," said he, u the two have taken their portion," and 
he picked up the other leaves, laid them on the dish, and carried 
them to the maiden. " I bring you the delicate food myself," 
said he, " in order that you may not have to wait longer." 

Then she ate of it, and was, like the others, immediately de- 
prived of her human form, and ran out into the courtyard in 
the shape of a Donkey. 

After the huntsman had washed his face, so that the trans- 
formed ones could recognize him, he went down into the court- 
yard, and said, " Now you shall receive the wages of your 
treachery/* and bound them together, all three with one rope, 
and drove them along until he came to a mill. 

He knocked at the window, the miller put out his head, and 

asked what he wanted. " I have three unmanageable beasts," 

answered he, " which I don't want to keep any longer. Will 

you take them in, and give them food and stable joom, and 

manage them as I tell you? Then I will pay you what you 



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The miller said, "Why not? But how am I to manage 
them? " 

The huntsman then said that he was to give three beatings 
and one meal daily to the old Donkey, and that was the Witch; 
one beating and three meals to the younger one, which was the 
servant-girl; and to the youngest, whieh was the maiden, no 
beatings and three meals, for he could not bring himself to 
have the maiden beaten. After that he went back into the 
castle, and found therein everything he needed. 

After a couple of days, the miller came and said he must 
inform him that the old Donkey which had received three beat- 
ings and only one meal daily, was dead; " the two others," he 
continued, " are certainly not dead, and are fed three times 
daily, but they are so sad that they cannot last much longer." 

The huntsman was moved to pity, put away his anger, and 
told the miller to drive them back again to him. And when 
they came, he gave them some of the good salad, so that they 
became human again. 

The beautiful maiden fell on her knees before him, and said, 
" Ah, my Beloved, forgive me for the evil I have done you. 
My mother drove me to it. It was done against my will, for 
I love you dearly. Your Wishing-Cloak hangs in a cupboard, 
and as for the Bird's-Heart I will take a potion and bring it up 

But he thought otherwise, and said, " Keep it. It is all the 
same, for I will take you for my true wife." 

So the wedding was celebrated, and they lived happily to- 
gether until their death. 


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THE mother of Hans said, " Whither away, Hans? " 
Hans answered, " To Grethel." 
" Behave well, Hans." 
" Oh, I'll behave well. Good-bye, Mother." 
" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans eonies to Grethel. " Good clay, Grethel." 
" Good day, Hans. What do you bring that is good? " 
" I bring nothing, I want to have something given me." 
Grethel presents Hans with a needle. 
Hans says, " Good-bye, Grethel." 
" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans takes the needle, stieks it into a hay-cart, and follows 
the eart home. " Good evening, Mother." 

" Good evening, Hans. Where have you been? " 

" With Grethel." 

" What did you take her? " 

" Took nothing; had something given me." 

" What did Grethel give you? " 


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" Gave me a needle." 
*• Where is the needle, Hans? " 
" Stuck in the hay -cart." 

" That was ill done, Hans. You should have stuck the needle 
in your sleeve." 

" Never mind, I'll do better next time." 


" Whither away, Hans? " 

" To Grethel, Mother." 

" Behave well, Hans." 

*' Oh, I'll behave well. Good-bye, Mother." 

** Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans comes to Grethel. " Good day, Grethel." 

" Good day, Hans. What do you bring that is good? " 

" I bring nothing, I want to have something given me." 

Grethel presents Hans with a knife. 

" Good-bye, Grethel." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans takes the knife, stieks it in his sleeve, and goes home. 

" Good evening, Mother." 

" Good evening, Hans. Where have you been? " 

** With Grethel." 

" What did you take her? " 

" Took her nothing, she gave me something." 

" What did Grethel give you? " 

*' Gave me a knife." 

" Where is the knife, Hans? " 


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" Stuck it in my sleeve." 

" That's ill done, Hans, you should have put the knife in 
your pocket." 

4< Never mind, will do better next time." 


" Whither away, Hans? " 

" To Grethel, Mother." 

" Behave well, Hans." 

u Oh, 111 behave well. Good-bye, Mother." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans comes to Grethel. " Good day, Grethel." 

44 Good day, Hans. What good thing do you bring? " 

44 I bring nothing. I want something given me." 

Grethel presents Hans with a young goat. 

44 Good-bye, Grethel." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans takes the goat, ties its legs, and puts it in his pocket. 

When he gets home it is suffocated. 

41 Good evening, Mother." 

44 Good evening, Hans. Where have you been? " 

44 With Grethel." 

44 What did you take her?" 

44 Took nothing, she gave me something." 

44 What did Grethel give you? " 

4< She gave me a goat." 

44 Where is the goat, Hans? " 

44 Put it in my pocket." 


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" That was ill done, Hans, you should have put a rope round 
the goat's neck." 

" Never mind, will do better next time." 


" Whither away, Hans? " 

" To Grethel, Mother." 

" Behave well, Hans. 5 ' 

" Oh, I'll behave well. Good-bye, Mother." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans eomes to Grethel. " Good day, Grethel." 

" Good day, Hans. "What good thing do you bring? " 

" I bring nothing, I want something given me." 

Grethel presents Hans with a piece of bacon. 

" Good-bye, Grethel." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans takes the bacon, ties it to a rope, and drags it away 
behind him. The dogs come and devour the bacon. When he 
gets home, he has the rope in his hand, and there is no longer 
anything hanging to it. 

" Good evening, Mother." 

" Good evening, Hans. Where have you been? " 

" With Grethel." 

" What did you take her? " 

" I took her nothing, she gave me something." 

" What did Grethel give you? " 

" Gave me a bit of baeon." 

" Where is the baeon, Hans? " 

" I tied it to a rope, brought it home, dogs took it." 


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" That was ill done, Hans, you should have carried the bacon 
on your head." 

" Never mind, will do better next time." 

"Whither away, Hans?' 1 

" To Grethel, Mother/' 

" Behave well, Hans." 

" I'll behave well. Good-bye, Mother." 

u Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans comes to Grethel. " Good day, Grethel." 

" Good day, Hans. What good thing do you bring? " 

" I bring nothing, but would have something given me." 

Grethel presents Hans with a calf. 

" Good-bye, Grethel." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans takes the calf, puts it on his head, and the calf kicks his 

" Good evening, Mother." 

" Good evening, Hans. Where have you been? " 

" With Grethel." 

"What did you take her?" 

" I took nothing, but had something given me." 

" What did Grethel give you? " 

" A calf." 

" Where have you the calf, Hans? " 

" I set it on my head and it kicked my face." 

" That was ill done, Hans, you should have led the calf, and 

put it in the stall." 

" Never mind, will do better next time." 


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" Whither away, Hans? " 

" To Grethel, Mother." 

" Behave well, Hans." 

" I'll behave well. Good-bye, Mother." 

" Good-bye, Hans." 

Hans comes to Grethel. " Good day, Grethel " 

" Good day, Hans. What good thing do you bring? " 

" I bring nothing, but would have something given me." 

Grethel says to Hans, " I will go with you." 

Hans takes Grethel, ties her to a rope, leads her to the rack, 
and binds her fast. Then Hans goes to his mother. 

" Good evening, Mother." 

" Good evening, Hans. Where have you been? " 

" With Grethel." 

" What did you take her? " 

" I took her nothing." 

" What did Grethel give you? " 

" She gave me nothing, she came with me." 

" Where have you left Grethel? " 

" I led her by the rope, tied her to the rack, and scattered 
some grass for her." 

" That was ill done, Hans, you should have cast friendly eyes 
on her." 

" Never mind, will do better." 

Hans went into the stable, cut out all the calves' and sheep's 
eyes, and threw them in GrethePs face. Then Grethel became 
angry, tore herself lose and ran away, and became the Bride of 



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IN the days when wishing was having, a King's Son was 
enchanted by an old Witch, and shut up in an Iron Stove 
in a forest. There he passed many years, and no one could 
deliver him. 

Then a King's Daughter came into the forest, who had lost 
herself and could not find her father's kingdom again. After 
she had wandered about for nine days, she at length came to 
the Iron Stove. Then a voice issued from it, and asked her, 
" Whence come you, and whither go you? " 

She answered, " I have lost my father's kingdom, and can- 
not get home again." 

Then a voice inside the Iron Stove said, " I will help you to 
get home, and that indeed most swiftly, if you will promise to 
do what I desire of you. I am the son of a far greater King 
than your father, and I will marry you." 

Then was she afraid, and thought, "Alas! What use could I 
have with an Iron Stove?" But as she much wished to get 
home to her father, she promised to do as he desired. 

He said, " You shall return here, and bring a knife with 

you, and scrape a hole in the iron," 


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Then he gave her a companion who walked near her, but did 
not speak. In two hours he took her home. There was great 
joy in the castle when the King's Daughter came back, and 
the old King fell on her neck, and kissed her. 

She, however, was sorely troubled, and said, " Dear Father, 
what I have suffered! I should never have got home again 
from the great wild forest, if I had not come to an Iron Stove. 
But I have been forced to give my word that I will go back to 
it, set it free, and marry it." 

Then the old King was so terrified that he all but fainted, 
for he had only this one daughter. They, therefore, resolved 
they would send, in her place, the miller's daughter, who was 
very beautiful. They took her there, gave her a knife, and said 
she was to scrape at the Iron Stove. So she scraped at it for 
four-and-twenty hours, but could not bring off the least morsel 
of it. 

When day dawned, a voice in the stove said, " It seems to 
me it is day outside." 

Then she answered, " It seems so to me too. I fancy I hear 
the noise of my father's mill." 

" So you are a miller's daughter! Then go your way at 
once. Let the King's Daughter come here." 

She went away at once, and told the old King that the man 
outside there would have none of her — he wanted the King's 

They, however, still had a swineherd's daughter, who was 
even prettier than the miller's daughter, and they determined 
to give her a piece of gold to go to the Iron Stove, instead of 

the King's Daughter. So she was taken thither, and she also 

[ 292 ] 

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had to scrape for four-and-twenty hours. She, likewise, made 
nothing of it. 

When day broke, a voice inside the stove cried, " It seems to 
me it is day outside! " 

Then answered she, " So it seems to me. I fancy I hear my 
father's horn blowing." 

" Then you are a swineherd's daughter! Go away at once. 
Tell the King's Daughter to come, and tell her all must be 
done as was promised. And if she does not come, everything 
in the kingdom shall be ruined, and destroyed, and not one 
stone be left standing on another." 

When the King's Daughter heard that, she began to weep. 
But now there was nothing for it but to keep her promise. So 
she took leave of her father, put a knife in her pocket, and 
went forth to the Iron Stove in the forest. 

When she got there, she began to scrape, and the iron gave 
way, and when two hours were over, she had already scraped 
a small hole. Then she peeped in, and saw a youth so hand- 
some, and so brilliant with gold and with precious jewels, 
that her very soul was delighted. Therefore, she went on 
scraping, and made the hole so large that he was able to get 

Then said he, " You are mine, and I am yours. You are my 
Bride, and have released me." 

He wanted to take her away with him to his kingdom, but 

she entreated him to let her go once again to her father. The 

King's Son allowed her to do so, but she was not to say more 

to her father than three words, and then she was to come back 


[ 293 ] 

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So she went home, but she spoke more than three words, and 
instantly the Iron Stove disappeared, and was taken far away 
over glass mountains and piercing swords. But the King's 
Son was set free, and no longer shut up in it. 

After this, she bade good-bye to her father, took some money 
with her, but not much, and went back to the great forest, and 
looked for the Iron Stove, but it was nowhere to be found. 
For nine days she sought it. Then her hunger grew so great 
that she did not know what to do, for she could no longer live. 

When it was evening, she seated herself in a small tree, and 
made up her mind to spend the night there, as she was afraid 
of wild beasts. When midnight drew near, she saw in the dis- 
tance a small light, and thought, " Ah, there I may be saved! " 
She got down from the tree, and went toward the light, and on 
the way she prayed. Then she came to a little old house, and 
much grass had grown all about it, and a small heap of wood 
lay in front of it. 

She thought, " Ah, whither have I eome! " and peeped in 
through the window. But she saw nothing inside but Toads, 
big and little, except a table covered with wine and roast meat, 
while the plates and glasses %vere of silver. Then she took 
courage, and knocked at the door. The fat Toad cried; 

"Little green Waiting-Maid, 
Waiting-Maid ivith the limping leg, 
Little Dog of the limping leg, 
Hop hither and thither, 
And quickly see who is without!" 

and a small Toad came along and opened the door to her. 

When she entered, thev all bade her welcome, and she was 


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forced to sit down. They asked, " Where have you come from, 
and whither are you going? " 

Then she related all that had befallen her, and how because 
she had disobeyed the order which had been given her not to 
say more than three words, the stove, and the King's Son also, 
had disappeared, and now she was seeking him over hill and 
dale until she found him. At that, the old fat one said: 

"Little green Waiting-Maid, 
Waiting-Maid with the limping leg, 
Little Bog of the limping leg, 
Hop hither and thither, 
And bring vie the great box." 

Then the little one went and brought the box. After this they 
gave her meat and drink, and took her to a well-made bed, 
which felt like silk and velvet. She laid herself therein, in 
God's name, and slept. 

When morning came she arose, and the old Toad gave her 
three needles out of the great box, which she was to take with 
her; they would be needed by her, for she had to cross a high 
Glass Mountain, and go over three piercing swords and a great 
lake. If she did all this, she would get her lover back again. 
Then she gave her three things, which she was to take the great- 
est care of, namely, three large needles, a plough-wheel, and 
three nuts. 

With these she traveled onwards, and when she came 

to the Glass Mountain, which was so slippery, she stuck the 

three needles first behind her feet and then before them, and 

so got over it. And when she was over it, she hid them in a 

place which she marked carefully. After this she came to the 


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three piercing swords, and then she seated herself on her 
plough-wheel, and rolled over them. At last she arrived in 
front of a great lake, and when she had crossed it, she came to 
a large and beautiful castle. 

She went in and asked for a place. She knew, however, that 
the King's Son whom she had released from the Iron Stove in 
the great forest, was in the castle. Then she was taken as a 
scullery-maid at low wages. But, already the King's Son had 
another maiden by his side, whom he wanted to marry, for he 
thought that she had long been dead. 

In the evening, when she had washed up and was done, she 
felt in her pocket and found the three nuts which the old Toad 
had given her. She cracked one with her teeth, and was going 
to eat the kernel, when, lo and behold, there was a stately royal 
garment in it! But when the Bride heard of this she came and 
asked for the dress, and wanted to buy it, and said, " It is not 
a dress for a servant-girl." 

She said, no, she would not sell it, but if the Bride would 
grant her one thing she should have it, and that was, leave to 
sleep one night in her Bridegroom's chamber. The Bride gave 
her permission because the dress was so pretty, and she had 
never had one like it. 

When it was evening, she said to her Bridegroom, " That 
silly girl will sleep in your room." 

" If you are willing so am I," said he. 

She, however, gave him a glass of wine in which she had 
poured a sleeping-draught. So the Bridegroom and the scul- 
lery-maid went to sleep in the room, and he slept so soundly 

that she could not waken him. 


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She wept the whole night and cried, " I set you free when 
you were in an Iron Stove in the wild forest. I sought you, 
and walked over a Glass Mountain, and three sharp swords, 
and a great lake before I found you, and yet you will not hear 

The servants sat by the chamber-door, and heard how she 
thus wept the whole night through, and in the morning they 
told it to their lord. 

And the next evening, when she had washed up, she opened 
the second nut, and a far more beautiful dress was within it. 
When the Bride beheld it, she wished to buy that also. But the 
girl would not take money, and begged that she might onee 
again sleep in the Bridegroom's chamber. The Bride, however, 
gave him a sleeping-drink, and he slept so soundly that he could 
hear nothing. 

But the scullery-maid wept the whole night long, and cried, 
" I set you free when you were in an Iron Stove in the wild 
forest. I sought you, and walked over a Glass Mountain, and 
over three sharp swords and a great lake before I found you, 
and yet you will not hear me! " 

The servants sat by the chamber-door and heard her weeping 
the whole night through, and in the morning informed their 
lord of it. 

And on the third evening, when she had washed up, she 
opened the third nut, and within it was a still more beautiful 
dress which was stiff with pure gold. 

When the Bride saw that, she wanted to have it, but the 

maiden gave it up only on condition that she might for the 

third time sleep in the Bridegroom's apartment. The King's 


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Son was, however, on his guard, and threw the sleeping- 
draught awav. 

Now, therefore, when she began to weep and to cry, " Dear- 
est Love, I set you free when you were in the Iron Stove in the 
terrible wild forest," the King's Son leapt up and said, " You 
are the true one, you are mine, and I am yours/' 

Thereupon, while it was still night, he got into a carriage 
with her, and they took away the false Bride's clothes so that 
she could not get up. When they came to the great lake, they 
sailed across it, and when they reached the three sharp-cutting 
swords they seated themselves on the plough-wheel, and when 
they got to the Glass Mountain they thrust the three needles 
in it. And so at length they reached the little old house. But 
when they went inside that, it was a great castle, and the Toads 
were all disenchanted, and were King's children, and full of 

Then the wedding was celebrated, and the King's Son and 
the Princess remained in the castle, which was much larger 
than the castles of their fathers. But, as the old King grieved 
at being left alone, they fetched him away, and brought him to 
live with them. And they had two Kingdoms, and lived to- 
gether happily ever afterward. 

A Mouse did run, 
The story's done! 


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THERE was a poor, good little girl, who lived alone 
with her mother, and they had nothing more to eat. 
So the child went into the forest, and an Old 
Woman met her, who knew of her sorrow, and gave her a Lit- 
tle Pot, which, when she said: 

"Boil, Little Pot, boil!" 
would cook good sweet Porridge. And when she said: 

"Stop, Little Pot, stop!" 
it ceased to cook. 

The little girl took the Pot home to her mother. And now 
they were freed from their poverty and hunger, and ate sweet 
Porridge as often as they liked. 

Once on a time, when the little girl had gone out, the mother 


"Boil, Little Pot, boil!" 

And it began to cook, and she ate till she was satisfied. Then 

she wanted the Pot to stop cooking, but did not know the word. 

So it went on cooking, and the Porridge rose over the edge. 


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And still it cooked on till the kitchen, and the whole house was 
full, and then the next house, and then the whole street, just 
as if it wanted to satisfy the hunger of the whole world. And 
there was the greatest trouble, and no one knew how to stop it. 
At last, when only a single house was left, the child came 
lome and just said: 

"Stop, Little Pot, stop!" 

and it stopped cooking. 

And whosoever wished to return to the town, had to eat his 
way back. 


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THERE was once a poor widow who lived in a lonely 
cottage. In front of the cottage was a garden wherein 
stood two rose-trees, one of which bore white and the 
other red roses. She had two ehildren who were like the two 
rose-trees. One was called Snow- White, and the other Rose- 

They were as good and happy, as busy and cheerful as ever 
two children in the world were, only Snow-White was more 
quiet and gentle than Rose-Red. Rose-Red liked better to 
run about in the meadows and fields seeking flowers and cateh- 
ing butterflies. But Snow-White sat at home with her mother, 
and helped her with the housework, or read to her when there 
was nothing to do. 

The two children were so fond of each other, that they al- 
ways held each other by the hand when they went out together. 
When Snow-White said, " We will not leave each other," Rose- 
Red answered, " Never so long as we live." And their mother 
would add, <c What one has, she must share with the other." 

They often ran about the forest alone and gathered red 


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berries. Beasts never did them any harm, but came close to 
them trustfully. The little hare would eat a cabbage-leaf out 
of their hands, the roe grazed by their side, the stag leapt 
merrily by them, and the birds sat still upon the boughs, and 
sang whatever they knew. 

No mishap overtook them. If they stayed too late in the 
forest, and night came on, they laid themselves down near one 
another upon the moss, and slept until morning. Their mother 
knew this, and had no worry on their account. 

One day, when they had spent the night in the wood and the 
dawn had roused them, they saw a beautiful Child in a shining 
white dress sitting near their bed. He got up and looked quite 
kindly at them, but said nothing and went away into the forest. 
And when they looked round, they found that they had been 
sleeping quite close to a precipice, and would certainly have 
fallen into it in the darkness, if they had gone only a few paces 
farther. And their mother told them that it must have been 
the Angel who watches over good children. 

Snow-White and Rose-Red kept their mother's little cottage 
so neat, that it was a pleasure to look inside it. In the summer, 
Rose-Red took care of the house, and every morning laid a 
wreath of flowers by her mother's bed before she awoke, in 
which w r as a rose from each tree. In the winter, Snow-White 
lit the fire and hung the kettle on the hook. The kettle was of 
copper and shone like gold, so brightly was it polished. 

In the evening, when the snowflakes fell, the mother said, 

" Go, Snow-White, and bolt the door," and then they sat round 

the hearth, and the mother took her spectacles and read aloud 

out of a large book. The two girls listened as they sat and 


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span. And close by them lay a lamb upon the floor, and be- 
hind them upon a pereh sat a white dove with its head hidden 
beneath its wings. 

One evening, as they were thus sitting comfortably together, 
some one knocked at the door as if he wished to be let in. The 
mother said, " Quick, Rose-Red, open the door, it must be a 
traveler who is seeking shelter." 

Rose-Red went and pushed back the bolt, thinking that it 
was a poor man, but it was not. It was a Bear that stretched 
his broad, black head within the door. 

Rose-Red screamed and sprang back, the Iamb bleated, the 
dove fluttered, and Snow-White hid herself behind her 
mother's bed. 

But the Bear began to speak and said, " Do not be afraid. 
I will do you no harm! I am half- frozen, and only want to 
warm myself a little beside you." 

" Poor Bear," said the mother, " lie down by the fire. .Only 
take care that vou do not burn vour eoat." Then she cried, 
" Snow-White, Rose-Red, come out, the Bear will do you no 
harm, he means well." 

. So they both eame out, and by-and-by the lamb and dove 
came nearer, and were not afraid of him. 

The Bear said, " Here, Children, knock the snow out of my 
coat a little; " so they brought the broom and swept the Bear's 
hide clean. And he stretched himself by the fire and growled 
contentedly and comfortably. 

It was not long before they grew quite at home, and played 

tricks with their clumsy guest. They tugged at his hair with 

their hands, put their feet upon his back and rolled him about, 


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or they took a hazel-switch and beat him, and, when he growled, 
they laughed. But the Bear took it all in good part, only 
when they were too rough he called out, " Leave me alive, Chil- 
dren : 

"Snowy-white, Rosy-red, 
Will you beat your lover dead?" 

When it was bedtime, and the others went to sleep, the 
mother said to the Bear, " You may lie there by the hearth, and 
then vou will be safe from the cold and the bad weather." 

As soon as day dawned the two children let him out, and he 
trotted across the snow into the forest. 

Henceforth the Bear came every evening at the same time, 
laid himself down by the hearth, and let the children amuse 
themselves with him as much as they liked. They got so used 
to him, that the doors were never fastened until their black 
friend had arrived. 

When spring was come and all outside was green, the Bear 
said one morning to Snow- White, " Now I must go away, and 
cannot come back for the whole summer." 

" Where are you going, then, dear Bear? " asked Snow- 

" I must go into the forest and guard my treasures from the 

wicked Dwarfs. In the winter, when the earth is frozen hard, 

they are obliged to stay below and cannot work their way 

through. But now, when the sun has thawed and warmed the 

earth, they break through it, and come out to pry and steal. 

And what once gets into their hands and in their caves, does 

not easily see daylight again." 

Snow-White was very sorry for his going away. And as 


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she unSolted the door for him, and the Bear was hurrying out, 
he caught against the bolt and a piece of his hairy coat was 
torn off. It seemed to Snow- White as if she saw gold shining 
through it, but she was not sure about it. The Bear ran away 
quickly, and was soon out of sight behind the trees. 

A short time afterward, the mother sent her children into 
the forest to get fire-wood. There they found a big tree which 
lay felled on the ground, and close by the trunk something was 
jumping backward and forward in the grass. But they could 
not make out what it was. 

When they came nearer they saw a Dwarf with an old with- 
ered face and a snow-white beard a yard long. The end of 
the beard was caught in a crevice of the tree, and the little 
fellow was jumping backward and forward like a dog tied to 
a rope, and did not know what to do. 

He glared at the girls with his fiery red eyes and cried, 
" Why do you stand there? Can you not come here and help 

" What are you about there, Little Man? " asked Rose-Red. 

" You stupid, prying goose! " answered the Dwarf; " I was 
going to split the tree to get a little wood for cooking. The 
little bit of food that one of us wants gets burnt up directly 
with thick logs. We do not swallow so much as you coarse, 
greedy folk. I had just driven the wedge safely in, and every- 
thing was going as I wished; but the wretched wood was too 
smooth and suddenly sprang asunder, and the tree closed so 
quickly that I could not pull out my beautiful white beard. 
So now it is tight in, and I cannot get away. And you silly, 
sleek, milk-faced things laugh! Ugh! how odious you are! " 


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The children tried very hard, but they could not pull the 
beard out, it was caught too fast. 

" I will run and fetch some one," said Rose-Red, 

" You senseless goose! " snarled the Dwarf. " Why should 
you fetch some one? You are already two too many for me. 
Can you not think of something better? " 

" Don't be impatient," said Snow- White, " I will help you," 
and she pulled her scissors out of her pocket, and cut off the 
end of the beard. 

As soon as the Dwarf felt himself free, he grabbed a bag 
which lay amongst the roots of the tree, and which was full of 
gold, and lifted it up, grumbling to himself, " Rude people, to 
cut off a piece of my fine beard ! Bad luck to you ! " and then 
he swung the bag upon his back, and went off without even 
once looking at the children. 

Some time after that Snow-White and Rose-Red went to 
catch a dish of fish. As they came near the brook, they saw 
something like a large grasshopper jumping toward the water, 
as if it were going to leap in. They ran to it and found it was 
the Dwarf. 

" Where are you going? " said Rose-Red; " you surely don't 
want to go into the water? " 

" I am not such a fool!" cried the Dwarf; " don't you see 

that the accursed fish wants to pull me in? " The Little Man 

had been sitting there fishing, and unluckily the wind had 

twisted his beard with the fishing-line. Just then a big fish bit, 

and the feeble creature had not strength to pull it out. The 

fish kept the upper hand and was pulling the Dwarf toward 

him. He held on to all the reeds and rushes, but it was of little 


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good, he was forced to follow the fish, and was in great danger 
of being dragged into the water. 

The girls came just in time. They held him fast and tried 
to free his beard from the line. But all in vain, beard and line 
were entangled fast together. Nothing was left but to bring 
out the scissors and cut the beard, whereby a small part of it 
was lost. 

When the Dwarf saw that, he screamed out, " Is that civil, 
you toadstool, to disfigure one's face? Was it not" enough to 
clip off the end of my beard? Now you have cut off the best 
part of it. I cannot let myself be seen by my people. I wish 
you had been made to run the soles off your shoes! " Then he 
took out a sack of pearls which lay in the rushes, and, without 
saying a word more, he dragged it away and disappeared be- 
hind a stone. 

It happened that soon afterward the mother sent the two 
children to the town to buy needles and thread, and laces and 
ribbons. The road led them across a heath upon which huge 
pieces of rock lay strewn about. They now noticed a large 
bird hovering in the air, flying slowly round and round above 
them. It sank lower and lower, and at last settled near a rock 
not far off. Directly afterward they heard a loud, piteous cry. 
They ran up and saw, with horror, that the eagle had seized 
their old acquaintance the Dwarf, and was going to carry him 

The children, full of pity, at once took tight hold of the 
Little Man, and pulled against the eagle so long that at last 
he let his booty go. 

As soon as the Dwarf had recovered from his first fright, he 


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cried with his shrill voice, " Could you not have done it more 
carefully! You dragged at my brown coat, so that it is all 
torn and full of holes. You helpless, clumsy creatures!" 
Then he took up a sack full of precious stones, and slipped 
away again under the rock into his hole. 

The girls, who by this time were used to his thanklessness, 
went on their way and did their business in the town. 

As they crossed the heath again on their way home they sur- 
prised the Dwarf, who had emptied out his bag of precious 
stones in a clean spot, and had not thought that any one would 
come there at such a late hour. The evening sun shone upon 
the brilliant stones. They glittered and sparkled with all 
colors so beautifully, that the children stood still and looked at 

"Why do you stand gaping there?" cried the Dwarf, and 
his ashen-gray face became copper-red with rage. He was 
going on with his bad words, when a loud growling was heard, 
and a black Bear came trotting toward them out of the forest. 
The Dwarf sprang up in a fright, but he could not get to his 
cave, for the Bear was already close. 

Then in the fear of his heart he cried, " Dear Mr, Bear, 
spare me! I will give you all my treasures! Look, the beau- 
tiful jewels lying there! Grant me my life. What do you want 
with such a slender little fellow as I? You would not feel me 
between your teeth. Come, take these two wicked girls, they 
are tender morsels for you, fat as young quails. For mercy's 
sake eat them! " 

The Bear took no heed of his words, but gave the wicked 

creature a single blow with his paw, and he did not move again. 

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The girls had run away, but the Bear called to them, " Snow- 
White and Rose-Red, do not be afraid Wait, I will come 
with you." 

Then they knew his voice and waited. And when he came 
up to them, suddenly his bear-skin fell off, and he stood there 
a handsome man, clothed all in gold. 

" I am a King's Son," he said, " and I was bewitched by that 
wicked Dwarf, who had stolen my treasures. I have had to 
run about the forest as a savage bear until I was freed by his 
death. Now he has got his well-deserved punishment." 

Snow-White was married to him, and Rose-Red to his 
brother. They divided between them the great treasure which 
the Dwarf had gathered together in his cave. The old mother 
lived peacefully and happily with her children for many years. 
She took the two rose-trees with her, and they stood before her 
window, and every year bore the most beautiful roses, white 
and red. 


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IN former clays, every sound had its meaning, the birds also 
had their own language which every one understood. Now 
it only sounds like chirping, screeching, and whistling, and 
to some, like music without words. 

It came into the birds' mind, however, that they would no 
longer be without a ruler, and would choose one of themselves 
to be King. 

One alone amongst them, the green plover, was opposed to 
this. He had lived free and would die free, and anxiously 
flying hither and thither, he cried, " Where shall I go? where 
shall I go? " He retired into a lonely and unfrequented marsh, 
and showed himself no more among his fellows. 

The birds now wished to discuss the matter, and on a fine 
May morning they all gathered together from the woods and 
fields: eagles and chaffinches, owls and crows, larks and spar- 
rows, how can I name them all? Even the cuckoo came, and 
the hoopoe, his clerk, who is so called because he is always 
heard a few days before him, and a very small bird which as 

yet had no name, mingled with the band. 


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The hen, which by some accident had heard nothing of the 
whole matter, was astonished at the great assemblage. " What, 
what, what is going to be done? " she cackled. But the cock 
calmed his beloved hen, and said, " Only rich people," and told 
her what they had on hand. 

It was decided, however, that the one who could fly the high- 
est should be King. A tree-frog which was sitting among the 
bushes, when he heard that, cried a warning, " No, no, no! no! " 
because he thought that many tears would be shed because of 
this. But the crow said, " Caw, caw," and that all would pass 
off peaceably. 

It was now determined that, on this fine morning, they 
should at once begin to ascend, so that hereafter no one should 
be able to say, " I could easily have flown much higher, but the 
evening came on, and I could do no more." 

On a given signal, therefore, the whole troop rose up in the 
air. The dust ascended from the land, and there was tremen- 
dous fluttering and whirring and beating of wings. It looked 
as if a black cloud was rising up. The little birds were, how- 
ever, soon left behind. They could go no farther, and fell back 
to the ground. 

The larger birds held out longer, but none could equal the 
eagle, who mounted so high that he could have picked the eyes 
out of the sun. And when he saw that the others could not 
get up to him, he thought, " Why should I fly any higher, I 
am the King? " and began to let himself down again. 

The birds beneath him at once cried to him, " You must be 

our King, no one has flown so high as you." 

" Except me," screamed the little fellow without a name, 


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who had crept into the breast-feathers of the eagle. Xn'd as 
he was not at all tired, he rose up and mounted so high that he 
reached heaven itself. When, however, he had gone as far as 
this, he folded his wings together, and called down with clear 
and penetrating voice: 

" I am King! I am King!" 

" You, our King? " cried the birds angrily. " You have done 
this by trick and cunning! " 

So they made another condition. He should be King who 
could go down lowest in the ground. How the goose did flap 
about with its broad breast when it was once more on the land! 
How quickly the cock scratched a hole! The duck came off the 
worst of all, for she leapt into a ditch, but sprained her legs, 
and waddled away to a neighboring pond, crying, " Cheating, 

The little bird without a name, however, sought out a inouse- 

hole, slipped down into it, and cried out of it, with his small 


"I am King! I am King!" 

" You our King! " cried the birds still more angrily. " Do 
you think your cunning shall prevail? " 

They determined to keep him a prisoner in the hole and 

starve him out. The owl was placed as sentinel in front of it, 

and was not to let the rascal out if she had any value for her 

life. When evening was come all the birds were feeling very 

tired after exerting their wings so much that they went to 

bed with their wives and children. 

The owl alone remained standing by the mouse-hole, 


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gazing steadfastly into it with her great eyes. In the mean- 
time she, too, had grown tired and thought to herself, " You 
might eertainly shut one eye, you will still watch with the other, 
and the little miscreant shall not come out of his hole." So 
she shut one eye, and with the other looked straight at the 

The little fellow put his head out and peeped, and wanted to 
slip away, but the owl came forward, and he drew his head 
back. Then the owl opened the one eye again, and shut 
the other, intending to shut them in turn all through the night. 

But when she next shut the one eye, she forgot to open the 
other. And as soon as both her eyes were shut, she fell asleep 
The little fellow soon saw that, and slipped away. 

From that day forth, the owl has never dared to show her- 
self by daylight, for if she docs the other birds chase her and 
pluck her feathers out. She only flies out by night, but hates 
and pursues mice because they make such ugly holes. 

The little bird, too, is very unwilling to let himself be seen, 
because he is afraid it will cost him his life if he is caught. 
He steals about in the hedges, and when he is quite safe, he 
sometimes cries, " I am King," and for this reason, the other 
birds call him in mockery, " Hedge-King." 

No one, however, was so happy as the lark at not having to 
obey the little King. As soon as the sun appears, she ascends 
high in the air and cries, " All, how beautiful that is! beautiful 
that is! beautiful, beautiful! ah, how beautiful that is! " 


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THERE was once a woman who had three daughters, 
the eldest of whom was called One-Eye, because she 
had only one eye in the middle of her forehead, and 
the second, Two-Eyes, because she had two eyes like other 
folks, and the youngest, Three-Eyes, because she had three 
eyes; and her third eye was in the centre of her forehead. 

Now, as Two-Eyes saw just as other human beings did, her 
sisters and her mother could not endure her. They said to 
her, " You, with your two eyes, are no better than common 
folk. You do not belong to us! " 

They pushed her about, and threw old clothes to her, and 
gave her nothing to eat but what they left, and did everything 
that they could to make her unhappy. 

It came to pass that Two-Eyes had to go out into the fields 

and tend the goat, but she was still very hungry, because her 

sisters had given her so little to eat. She sat down on a ridge 

and began to weep, and so bitterly that two streams ran down 

from her eyes. 

And one day, when she looked up in her grief, a woman was 


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standing beside tier, who said, " Why are you weeping, little 

Two-Eyes answered, " Have I not reason to weep, when I 
have two eyes like other people, and my sisters and mother hate 
me for it, and push me from one corner to another, throw old 
clothes at me, and give me nothing to eat but the scraps they 
leave? To-day, they have given me so little that I am still very 

Then the Wise Woman said, " Wipe away your tears, Two- 
Eyes, and I will tell you something to stop your ever suffering 
from hunger again; just say to your goat: 

" ( Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, bleat, 
Cover the table tviih something to eat! 9 

and then a clean well-spread little table will stand before you, 
with the most delicious food upon it, of which you may eat as 
much as you are inclined. And when you have had enough, and 
have no more need of the little table, just say: 

" 'Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, I pray, 
And take the table qtiite aivay!' 

and then it will vanish again from your sight." 

Hereupon the Wise Woman departed. 

But Two-Eyes thought, " I must instantly make a trial, and 

see if what she said is true, for I am far too hungry," and she 


"Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, bleat, 
Cover the table with something to eat!" 

and scarcely had she spoken the words than a little table, cov- 
ered with a white cloth, was standing there, and on it was a 


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plate with a knife and fork, and a silver spoon ; and the most 
delicious food was there also, warm and smoking as if it had 
just come out of the kitchen. 

Then Two-Eyes said a little prayer she knew, " Lord God, 
be with us always, Amen," and helped herself to some food, 
and enjoyed it. And when she was satisfied, she said, as the 
Wise Woman had taught her: 

"Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, I pray, 
And take the table quite away!" 

and immediately the little table and everything on it was gone 

" That is a delightful way of keeping house! " thought Two- 
Eyes, and was quite glad and happy. 

In the evening, when she went home with her goat, she found 
a small earthenware dish with some food, which her sisters had 
set ready for her, but she did not touch it. Next day, she 
again went out with her goat, and left the few bits of broken 
bread which had been handed to her, lying untouched. 

The first and second time that she did this, her sisters did 
not notice it, but as it happened every time, they did observe it, 
and said, " There is something wrong about Two-Eyes, she 
always leaves her food untasted. She used to eat up every- 
thing that was given her. She must have discovered other 
ways of getting food." 

In order that they might learn the truth, they resolved to 

send One-Eye with Two-Eyes, when she went to drive her 

goat to the pasture, to watch what Two-Eyes did while she was 

there, and whether any one brought her things to eat and drink. 


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So when Two-Eyes set out the next time, One-Eye went to her 
and said, " I will go with you to the pasture, and see that the 
goat is well taken care of, and driven where there is food." 

But Two-Eyes knew what was in One-Eye's mind, and 
drove the goat into high grass and said, " Come, One-Eye, we 
will sit down, and I will sing something to you." 

One-Eye sat down, and was tired with the unaccustomed 
walk and the heat of the sun, and Two-Eyes sang constantly; 

'One-Eye, wakest thou? 
One-Eye, steepest thouf" 

until One-Eye shut her one eye, and fell asleep. As soon as 
Two-Eyes saw that One-Eye was fast asleep, and could dis- 
cover nothing, she said: 

"Bleat, Ueat y my little Goat, bleat, 
Cover the table with something to eat!" 

and seated herself at her table, and ate and drank until she was 
satisfied. Then she again cried: 

"Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, I pray, 
And take the table quite away!" 

and in an instant all was gone. 

Two-Eyes now awakened One-Eye, and said, " One-Eye, 
you want to take care of the goat, and yet go to sleep while you 
are doing it! In the meantime, the goat might run all over the 
world. Come, let us go home again." 

So they went home, and again Two-Eyes let her little dish 

stand untouched, and One-Eye could not tell her mother why 


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she would not eat it, and to excuse herself said, " I fell asleep 
when I was out." 

Next day, the mother said to Three-Eyes, " This time you 
shall go and wateh if Two-Eyes eats anything when she is out, 
and if any one fetches her food and drink, for she must eat and 
drink in secret/' 

So Three-Eyes went to Two-Eyes, and said, " I will go with 
you and see if the goat is taken proper care of, and driven 
where there is food." 

But Two-Eyes knew what was in Three-Eyes' mind, and 
drove the goat into high grass and said, " We will sit down, 
and I will sing something to you, Three-Eyes." 

Three-Eyes sat down and was tired with the walk and with 
the heat of the sun, and Two-Eyes began the same song as be- 
fore, and sang: 

"Three-Eyes, are you waking ?" 
but then, instead of singing, 

"Three-Eyes* are you sleeping?" 
as she ought to have done, she thoughtlessly sang: 

"Two-Eyes, are you sleeping?" 

and sang all the time, 

"Three-Eyes, are you waking? 
Two-Eyes, are you sleeping?" 

Then two of the eyes which Three-Eyes had, shut and fell 
asleep, but the third, as it had not been named in the song, did 

not sleep. It is true that Three-Eyes shut it, but only in her 

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cunning, to pretend it was asleep too. But it blinked, and 
could see everything very well. And when Two-Eyes thought 
that Three-Eyes was fast asleep, she used her little charm: 

"Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, bleat, 
Cover the table with something to eat!" 

and ate and drank as much as her heart desired, and then or- 
dered the table to go away again: 

"Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, I pray. 
And take the table quite away! 79 

and Three-Eyes had seen everything. 

Then Two-Eyes came to her, waked her and said, " Have 
you been asleep, Three-Eyes? You are a good caretaker 1 
Come, we will go home." 

And when they got home, Two-Eyes again did not eat, and 

Three-Eyes said to the mother, " Now, I know why that proud 

thing there does not eat. When she is out, she says to the 


" 'Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, bleat, 
Cover the table with something to eat!' 

and then a little table appears before her covered with the best 
of food, much better than any we have here. When she has 
eaten all she wants, she says: 

" 'Bleat, bleat, my little Goat, I pray, 
And take the table quite away!' 

and all disappears. I watched everything closely. She put 

two of my eyes to sleep by using a charm, but luckily the one in 

my forehead kept awake." 

Then the envious mother cried, " Do you want to fare better 


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than we do? The desire shall pass away! " and she fetched a 
butcher's knife» and thrust it into the heart of the goat, which 
fell down dead. 

When Two-Eyes saw that, full of sorrow, she went outside, 
and seated herself on the ridge of grass at the edge of the field, 
and wept bitter tears. 

Suddenly the Wise Woman once more stood by her side, and 
said, " Two-Eyes, why are you weeping? " 

" Have I not reason to weep? " she answered. " The goat, 
which covered the table for me every day when I spoke your 
charm, has been killed by my mother, and now I shall again 
have to bear hunger and want." 

The Wise Woman said, " Two-Eyes, I will give you a piece 
of good advice. Ask your sisters to give you the entrails of the 
slaughtered goat, and bury them in the ground in front of the 
house, and your fortune will be made/' 

Then she vanished, and Two-Eyes went home and said to 
her sisters, " Dear Sisters, do give me some part of my goat. I 
don't wish for what is good, but give me the entrails." 

Then they laughed and said, " If that's all you want, you 
may have it." 

So Two-Eyes took the entrails and buried them quietly, at 
evening, in front of the house-door, as the Wise Woman had 
counseled her to do. 

Next morning, when they all awoke, and went to the house- 
door, there stood a wonderful, magnificent tree with leaves of 
silver, and fruit of gold hanging among them, so that in all the 
wide world there was nothing more beautiful or precious. 

They did not know how the tree could have come there during 


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the night, but Two-Eyes saw that it had grown up out of the 
entrails of the goat, for it was standing on the exact spot 
where she had buried them. 

Then the mother said to One-Eye, " Climb up, my Child, 
and gather some of the fruit of the tree for us." 

One-Eye climbed up, but when she was about to lay hold 
of one of the golden apples, the branch escaped from her hands. 
And that happened each time, so that she could not pluck a 
single apple, let her do what she might. 

Then said the mother, " Three-Eyes, do you climb up. You 
with your three eyes can look about you better than One-Eye." 

One-Eye slipped down, and Three-Eyes climbed up. 
Three-Eyes was not more skillful, and might search as she 
liked, but the golden apples always escaped her. 

At length, the mother grew impatient, and climbed up her- 
self, but could grasp the fruit no better than One-Eye and 
Three-Eyes, for she always clutched empty air. 

Then said Two-Eyes, " I will go up, perhaps I may succeed 

The sisters cried, " You, indeed, with your two eyes! What 
can you do?" 

But Two-Eyes climbed up, and the golden apples did not 

get out of her way, but came into her hand of their own accord, 

so that she could pluck them one after the other. And she 

brought a whole apronful down with her. The mother took 

them away from her, and instead of treating poor Two-Eyes 

any better for this, she and One-Eye and Three-Eyes were 

only envious, because Two-Eyes alone had been able to get the 

fruit. They treated her still more cruelly. 


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It so befell that once, when they were all standing together 
by the tree, a young Knight came up. " Quick, Two-Eyes," 
cried the two sisters, " creep under this and don't disgrace 
us!" and with all speed they turned an empty barrel, which 
was standing close by the tree, over poor Two-Eyes, and they 
pushed the golden apples which she had been gathering, under 
it too. 

When the Knight came nearer he was a handsome lord, who 
stopped and admired the magnificent gold and silver tree, and 
said to the two sisters, " To whom does this fine tree belong? 
Any one who will bestow one branch of it on me may, in re- 
turn for it, ask whatsoever he desires." 

Then One-Eye and Three-Eyes replied that the tree be- 
longed to them, and that they would give him a branch. They 
both tried very hard, but they were not able to do it, for every 
time the branches and fruit moved away from them. 

Then said the Knight, " It is very strange that the tree 
should belong to you, and yet you should still not be able to 
break a piece off." 

They again insisted that the tree was their property. Whilst 
they were saying so, Two-Eyes rolled a couple of golden 
apples from under the barrel to the feet of the Knight, for 
she was vexed with One-Eye and Three-Eyes, for not speak- 
ing the truth. 

When the Knight saw the apples he was astonished, and 
asked from whence they came. One-Eye and Three-Eyes an- 
swered that they had another sister, who was not allowed to 
show herself, for she had only two eyes like any common per- 


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The Knight, however, desired to see her, and cried, " Two* 
Eyes, come hither! " 

Then Two-Eyes, quite cheered, came from beneath tHe 
barrel, and the Knight was surprised at her great beauty, and 
said, " You, Two-Eyes, can certainly break off a branch from 
the tree for me." 

" Yes," replied Two-Eyes, " that I certainly shall be able 
to do, for the tree belongs to me," And she climbed up, and 
with the greatest ease broke off a branch with beautiful silver 
leaves and golden fruit, and gave it to the Knight, 

Then said the Knight, " Two-Eyes, what shall I give you 
for it?" 

"Alas!" answered Two-Eyes, "I suffer from hunger and 
thirst, grief and want, from early morning till late night. If 
you would take me with j^ou, and deliver me from these things, 
I should be happy," 

So the Knight lifted Two-Eyes on his horse, and took her 
home with him to his father's castle. There he gave her beau- 
tiful clothes and meat and drink to her heart's content. And 
as he loved her so much he married her, and the wedding was 
solemnized with great rejoicing. 

When Two-Eyes was thus carried away by the handsome 
Knight, her two sisters grudged her good fortune in downright 
earnest. " The wonderful tree, however, remains with us,'* 
thought they, " and even if we can gather no fruit from it, 
every one will stand still and look at it, and come to us and 
admire it. Who knows what good things may be in store' for 


But next morning, the tree had vanished, and all their hopes 


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were at an end. And when Two-Eyes looked out of the win- 
dow of her own little room, to her great delight it was standing 
in front of it. And so it had followed her. 

Two-Eyes lived a long time in happiness. One day, two 
poor women came to her castle, and begged for alms. She 
looked in their faces, and recognized her sisters, One-Eye, and 
Three-Eyes, Avho had fallen into such poverty that they had to 
wander about and beg their bread from door to door. Two- 
Eyes made them weleome, and was kind to them, and took 
eare of them, so that they both, with all their hearts, repented 
of the evil that they had done in their youth to their sister. 


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The Old Witch 

THERE was once upon a time, a very old woman, who 
lived with her fioek of geese in a waste place among 
the mountains, and there had a little house. The waste 
was surrounded by a large forest, and every morning the Old 
Woman took her crutch and hobbled into it. 

There, however, the dame was quite active, more so than 
any one would have thought, considering her age, and collected 
grass for her geese, picked all the wild fruit she could reach, 
and carried everything home on her back. Any one would 
have thought that the heavy load would have weighed her to 
the ground, but she always brought it safely home. 

If any one met her, she greeted him quite courteously. 
" Good day, dear Countryman, it is a fine day. Ah! you won- 
der that I should drag grass about, but every one must take 
his burthen on his baek." 

Nevertheless, people did not like to meet her if they could 
help it, and took by preference a roundabout way. And when 

a father with his boys passed her, he whispered to them, " Be- 


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ware of tlie Old Woman. She has claws beneath her gloves. 
She is a Witch." 

One morning, a handsome young man was going through the 
forest. The sun shone bright, the birds sang, a cool breeze 
crept through the leaves, and he was full of joy and gladness. 
He had as yet met no one, when he suddenly perceived the old 
Witch kneeling on the ground cutting gi*ass with a sickle. She 
had already thrust a Avhole load into her cloth, and near it 
stood two baskets, Avhich were filled with wild apples and pears. 

" But, good little Mother," said he, " how can you carry all 
that away?" 

" I must carry it, dear Sir," answered she; " rich folk's chil- 
dren have no need to do such things, but with the peasant folk 
the saying goes, * Don't look behind you, you will only see how 
crooked your back is ! ' 

" Will you help me? " she said, as he remained standing by 
her. " You have still a straight back and young legs, it would 
be a trifle to you. Besides, my house is not so very far from 
here. It stands there on the heath behind the hill. How soon 
you would bound up thither! " 

The young man took compassion on the Old Woman. " My 
father is certainly no peasant," replied he, " but a rich Count. 
Nevertheless, that you may see it is not only peasants who can 
carry things, I will take your bundle." 

" If you Avill try it," said she, " I shall be very glad. You 

will certainly have to walk for an hour, but what will that 

signify to you? Only you must carry the apples and pears as 


It now seemed to the young man just a little serious, when 


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he heard of an hour's walk, but the Old Woman would not let 
him off, packed the bundle on his back, and hung the two bas- 
kets on his arm. " See, it is quite light," said she. 

" No, it is not light," answered the Count, and pulled a rue- 
ful face. " Verily, the bundle weighs as heavily as if it were 
full of cobblestones, and the apples and pears are as heavy 
as lead! I can scarcely breathe." 

He had a mind to put everything down again, but the Old 
Woman would not allow it. " Just look," said she mockingly, 
" the young gentleman will not carry what I, an old woman, 
have so often dragged along! You are ready with fine words, 
but when it comes to being in earnest, you want to take to your 
heels. Why are you standing loitering there? " she continued. 
" Step out. No one will take the bundle off again." 

As long as he walked on level ground, it was still bearable, 
but when they came to the hill and had to climb, and the stones 
rolled down under his feet as if they were alive, it was beyond 
his strength. The drops of perspiration stood on his forehead, 
and ran, hot and cold, down his back. 

" Dame," said he, " I can go no farther. I want to rest a 

" Not here," answered the Old Woman, " when we have ar- 
rived at our journey's end, you can rest. But now you must 
go forward. Who knows what good it may do you? " 

" Old woman, you are shameless! " said the Count, and tried 

to throw off the bundle, but he labored in vain. It stuck as 

fast to his back, as if it grew there. He turned and twisted, 

but he could not get rid of it. 

The Old Woman laughed at this, and sprang about quite 


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delighted on her crutch. " Don't get angry, dear Sir," said 
she, "you are growing as red in the face as a turkey-cock! 
Carry your bundle patiently. I will give you a good present 
when we get home." 

What could he do? He was obliged to submit to his fate, 
and crawl along patiently behind the Old Woman. She 
seemed to grow more and more nimble, and his burden still 
heavier. All at once, she made a spring, jumped on to the 
bundle and seated herself on the top of it. And however 
withered she might be, she was yet heavier than the stoutest 
country lass. 

The youth's knees trembled, but when he did not go on, the 
Old Woman hit him about the legs with a switch and with 
stinging-nettles. Groaning continually, he climbed the moun- 
tain, and at length reached the Old Woman's house, when he 
was just about to drop. 

When the geese perceived the Old Woman, they flapped 
their wings, stretched out their necks, ran to meet her, cackling 
all the while. Behind the flock walked, stick in hand, an old 
wench, strong and big, but ugly as night. " Good Mother," 
said she to the Old Woman, " has anything happened to you, 
you have stayed away so long? " 

" By no means, my dear Daughter," answered she, " I have 
met with nothing bad, but, on the contrary, with this kind 
gentleman, who has carried my burthen for me. Only think, 
he even took me on his back when I was tired. The way, too, 
has not seemed long to us. We have been merry, and have 
been cracking jokes with each other all the time." 

At last the Old Woman slid down, took the bundle off the 


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young man's back, and the baskets from his arm, looked at him 
quite kindly, and said, " Now seat yourself on the bench before 
the door, and rest. You have fairly earned your wages, and 
they shall not be wanting." 

Then she said to the goose-girl, " Go into the house, mj r little 
Daughter, it is not becoming for you to be alone with a young 
gentleman. One must not pour oil on to the fire, he might fall 
in love with you." 

The Count knew not whether to laugh or to cry. " Such a 
sweetheart as that," thought he, " eould not touch my heart, 
even if she were thirty years younger." 

In the meantime, the Old Woman stroked and fondled her 
geese as if they were ehildren, and then went into the house 
with her daughter. The youth lay down on the beneh, under 
a wild apple-tree. The air was warm and mild. On all sides 
stretched a green meadow, which was set with cowslips, wild 
thyme, and a thousand other flowers. Through the midst of it 
rippled a elear brook on which the sun sparkled, and the white 
geese went walking backward and forward, or paddled in the 

" It is quite delightful here," said he, " but I am so tired that 
I cannot keep my eyes open. I will sleep a little. If only a 
gust of wind does not come and blow my legs off my body, for 
they are as brittle as tinder." 

When he had slept a little while, the Old Woman eame and 

shook him till he awoke. " Sit up," said she, " you cannot 

stay here. I have certainly treated you badly, still it has not 

cost you your life. Of money and land you have no need, here 

is something else for you." 


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Thereupon she thrust a little book into his hand, which was 
cut out of a single emerald. " Take great care of it," said she, 
" it will bring you good fortune." 

The Count sprang up, and as he felt that he was quite fresh, 
and had reeovei*ed his vigor, he thanked the Old Woman for 
her present, and set off without even once looking back at the 
beautiful daughter. When he was already some way off, he 
still heard in the distance the noisy cry of the geese. 

For three days, the Count had to wander in the wilderness 
before he could find his way out. He then reached a large 
town. As no one knew him, he was led into the royal palace, 
where the King and Queen were sitting on their throne. The 
Count fell on one knee, drew the emerald book out of his 
pocket, and laid it at the Queen's feet. She bade him rise and 
hand her the little book. 

Hardly, however, had she opened it, and looked therein, than 
she fell as if dead to the ground. The Count was seized by the 
King's servants, and was being led to prison, when the Queen 
opened her eyes, and ordered them to release him, and every 
one was to go out, as she wished to speak with him in private. 

When the Queen was alone, she began to weep bitterly, and 

said, " Of what use to me are the splendors and honors with 

which I am surrounded! Every morning I awake in pain and 

sorrow. I had three daughters, the youngest of whom was so 

beautiful, that the whole world looked on her as a wonder. 

She was as white as snow, as rosy as apple-blossoms, and her 

hair as radiant as sunbeams. When she eried, not tears fell 

from her eyes, but pearls and jewels only. 

" When she was fifteen years old, the King summoned all 


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three sisters to come before his throne. You should have seen 
how all the people gazed when the j r oungest entered. It was 
just as if the sun were rising! Then the King spoke, 'My 
Daughters, I know not when my last hour may arrive. I will 
to-day decide what each shall receive at my death. You all 
love me, but the one of you who loves me best, shall fare the 

" Each of them said she loved him best. * Can you not 
express to me/ said the King, ' how much you do love me, and 
thus I shall see what you mean? ' 

" The eldest spoke. ' I love my Father as dearly as the 
sweetest sugar/ The second, * I love my Father as dearly as 
my prettiest dress.' But the youngest was silent. 

" Then the father said, * And you, my dearest Child, how 
much do you love me? ' * I do not know, and can compare my 
love with nothing.' But her father insisted that she should 
name something. So she said at last, ' The best food does not 
please me without salt, therefore I love my Father like salt.' 

" When the King heard that, he fell into a passion and said, 
' If you love me like salt, your love shall also be repaid with 

" Then he divided the kingdom between the two elder, but 
caused a sack of salt to be bound on the back of the youngest, 
and two servants had to lead her forth into the wild forest. 

" We all begged and prayed for her," said the Queen, " but 

the King's anger was not to be appeased. How she cried when 

she had to leave us! The whole road was strewn with the 

pearls which flowed from her eyes. 

" The King soon afterward repented of his great severity, 


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and had the whole forest searched for the poor child, but no one 
could find her. When I think that the wild beasts have de- 
voured her, I know not how to contain myself for sorrow. 
Many a time I console myself with the hope that she is still 
alive, and may have hidden herself in a cave, or has found 
shelter with compassionate people. 

" But picture to yourself, when I opened your little emerald 
book, a pearl lay therein, of exaetly the same kind as those 
which used to fall from my daughter's eyes. And then you 
can also imagine how the sight of it stirred my heart! You 
must tell me how you came by that pearl." 

The Count told her that he had received it from the Old 
Woman in the forest, who had appeared very strange to him, 
and must be a Witch. But he had neither seen nor heard any- 
thing of the Queen's child. The King and the Queen resolved 
to seek out the Old Woman. They thought that there where 
the pearl had been, they would obtain news of their daughter. 

The Gray Mash 
The Old Woman was sitting in that lonely place at her 
spinning-wheel, spinning. It was already dusk, and a log 
which was burning on the hearth gave a scanty light. All at 
once, there was a noise outside, the geese were coming home 
from the pasture, and uttering their hoarse cries. Soon after- 
ward the daughter entered. But the Old Woman scarcely 
thanked her, and only shook her head a little. The daughter 
sat down beside her, took her spinning-wheel, and twisted the 
threads as nimbly as a young girl. Thus they both sat for two 

hours, and exchanged never a word. 


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At last, something rustled at the window, and two fiery eyes 
peered in. It was an old night-owl, which cried, " Uhu! " 
three times. 

The Old Woman looked up just a little, then she said, 
" Now, my little Daughter, it is time for you to go out and do 
your work." 

She rose and went out, and where did she go? Over the 
meadows ever onward into the valley. At last, she came to a 
well, with three old oak-trees standing beside it. Meanwhile 
the moon had risen large and round over the mountain, and it 
was so light that one could have found a needle. 

She removed a skin which covered her face, then bent down 
to the well, and began to wash herself. When she had fin- 
ished, she dipped the skin also in the water, and laid it on the 
meadow, so that it should bleach in the moonlight, and dry 

But how the maiden was changed! Such a change as that 
was never seen before! When the gray mask fell off, her 
golden hair broke forth like sunbeams, and spread about like a 
mantle over her whole form. Her eyes shone out as brightly 
as the stars in heaven, and her cheeks bloomed a soft red like 

But the fair maiden was sad. She sat down and wept bit- 
terly. One tear after another forced itself out of her eyes, and 
rolled through her long hair to the ground. There she sat, and 
would have remained sitting a long time, if there had not been 
a rustling and cracking in the boughs of the neighboring tree. 
She sprang up like a roe which has been overtaken by the shot 

of the hunter. 


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Just then the moon was obscured by a darlc cloud, and in an 
instant the maiden had slipped on the old skin and vanished, as 
does a light blown out by the wind. 

She ran back home, trembling like an aspen-leaf. The Old 
Woman was standing on the threshold, and the maiden was 
about to relate what had befallen her, but the Old Woman 
laughed kindly, and said, " I already know it." 

She led her into the room and lighted a new log. She did 
not, however, sit down to her spinning again, but fetched a 
broom and began to sweep and scour. " All must be clean and 
sweet," she said to the maiden. 

" But, Mother," said the maiden, " why do you begin work 
at so late an hour? What do you expect? " 

"Do you know then what time it is?" asked the Old 

" Not yet midnight," answered the maiden, " but already 
past eleven o'clock." 

" Do you not remember," continued the Old Woman, " that 
it is three years to-day since you came to me? Your time is 
up, we can no longer remain together." 

The maiden was terrified, and said, "Alas! dear Mother, 
will you cast me off? Where shall I go? I have no friends, 
and no home to which I can go. I have always done as you 
bade me, and you have always been satisfied with me. Do not 
send me away." 

The Old Woman would not tell the maiden what lay before 
her. " My stay here is over," she said to her, " but when I 
depart, house and parlor must be clean: therefore do not hin- 
der me in my work. Have no care for yourself. You shall 


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find a roof to shelter you, and the wages which I will give you 
shall also content' you." 

" But tell me what is about to happen," the maiden con- 
tinued to entreat. 

" I tell you again, do not hinder me in my work. Do not 
say a word more, go to your chamber, take the skin off your 
face, and put on the silken gown which you had on when you 
came to me, and then wait in your chamber until I call you." 

The Goose-Girl 

But I must once more tell of the King and Queen, who had 
journeyed forth with the Count in order to seek out the Old 
Woman in the wilderness. The Count had strayed away from 
them in the wood by night, and had to walk onward alone. 

Next day, it seemed to him that he was on the right track. 
He still went forward, until darkness came qn, then he climbed 
a tree, intending to pass the night there, for he feared that he 
might lose his way. When the moon illumined the surrounding 
country he perceived a figure coming clown the mountain. She 
had no stick in her hand, yet he could see that it was the goose- 
girl, whom he had seen before in the house of the Old Woman. 

" Oho," cried he, " there she conies, and if I once get hold 
of one of the Witches, the other shall not escape me! " 

But how astonished he was, when she went to the well, took 

off the skin and washed herself. Her golden hair fell down all 

about her, and she was more beautiful than any one whom he 

had ever seen in the whole world. He hardly dared to breathe, 

but stretched his head as far forward through the leaves as he 

dared, and stared at her. Either he bent over too far, or what- 


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ever the cause might be, the bough suddenly cracked, and that 
very moment the maiden slipped into the skin, sprang away 
like a roe, and as the moon was suddenly covered, disappeared 
from his eyes. 

Hardly had she disappeared, before the Count descended 
from the tree, and hastened after her with nimble steps. He 
had not gone far before he saw, in the twilight, two figures 
coming over the meadow. It was the King and Queen, who 
had perceived from a distance the light shining in the Old 
Woman's little house, and were going to it. 

The Count told them what wonderful thing he had seen by 
the well, and they did not doubt but that she was their lost 
daughter. They walked onward full of joy, and soon came to 
the little house. The geese were sitting all round it, and had 
thrust their heads under their wings and were sleeping, and 
not one of them moved. 

The King and Queen looked in at the window. The Old 
Woman was sitting there quietly spinning, nodding her head 
and never looking round. The room was perfectly clean, as 
if the little Mist Men, who carry no dust on their feet, lived 
there. Their daughter, however, they did not see. They gazed 
at all this for a long time. At last they took heart, and knocked 
softly at the window. 

The Old Woman appeared to have been expecting them. 
She rose, and called out quite kindly, " Come in,— I know you 

When they had entered the room, the Old Woman said, 

" You might have spared yourself the long walk, if you had 

not three years ago unjustlv driven away your child, who is 


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so good and lovable. A T o harm has come to her. For three 
years she has had to tend the geese. With them she has learnt 
no evil, but has preserved her purity of heart. You, however, 
have been sufficiently punished by the misery in which you 
have lived." 

Then she went to the chamber and ealled, " Come out, my 
little Daughter." 

Thereupon the door opened, and the Princess stepped out in 
her silken garments, with her golden hair and her shining eyes, 
and it was as if an Angel from Heaven had entered. 

She went up to her father and mother, fell on their necks 
and kissed them. There was no help for it, they all had to 
weep for joy. The young Count stood near them; and when 
she perceived him, she became as red in the faee as a moss-rose, 
she herself did not know why. 

The King said, " My dear Child, I have given away my 
kingdom, what shall I give thee? " 

" She needs nothing," said the Old Woman. " I give her 
the tears that she has wept on your account. They are pre- 
cious pearls, finer than those that are found in the sea, and 
worth more than your whole kingdom, and I give her my little 
house as payment for her services." 

When the Old Woman had said that, she disappeared from 
their sight. The walls rattled a little, and when the King and 
Queen looked round, the little house had changed into a splen- 
did palace, a royal table had been spread, and the servants were 
running hither and thither. 


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THERE was once upon a time, a King who had twelve 
daughters, each one more beautiful than the other. 
They all slept together in one chamber, in which their 
beds stood side by side. 

Every night, when they were in them, the King locked the 
door, and bolted it. But in the morning, when he unlocked the 
door, he saw that their shoes were worn out with dancing, and 
no one could find out how that had happened. 

Then the King caused it to be proclaimed that whosoever 
could discover where they danced at night, should choose one 
of them for his wife and be King after his death. But that 
whosoever came forward and had not discovered it within three 
days and nights, should forfeit his life. 

It was not long before a King's Son presented himself, and 
offered to undertake the enterprise. He was well received, 
and in the evening was led into a room adjoining the Prin- 
cesses' sleeping-chamber. His bed was placed there, and he 
was to watch where they went and danced. And in order that 
they might do nothing secretly or go away to some other place, 

the door of their room was left open. 


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But the eyelids of the Prince grew heavy as lead, and he 
fell asleep. 

When he awoke in the morning, all twelve had been to the 
dance, for their shoes were standing there with holes in the 

On the second and third nights it fell ont just the same, and 
then his head was struck off without mercy. Many others 
came after this and undertook the enterprise, but all forfeited 
their lives. 

Now, it came to pass that a poor soldier, who had a wound, 
and could serve no longer, found himself on the road to the 
town where the King lived. There he met an Old Woman, 
who asked him where he was going. 

" I hardly know myself," answered he, and added in jest, 
" I had half a mind to discover where the Princesses danced 
their shoes into holes, and thus become King." 

" That is not so difficult," said the Old Woman, " you must 
not drink the wine which will be brought to you at night." 

With that she gave him a little cloak, and said, " If you put 
on that, you will be invisible, and then you can steal after the 

When the soldier had received this good advice, he took 
heart, went to the King, and announced himself as a suitor. 
He was as well received as the others, and royal garments were 
put upon him. 

He was conducted that evening, at bedtime, into the outer- 
chamber, and as he was about to go to bed, the eldest came 
and brought him a cup of wine. 

He lay down, but did not drink the wine. 


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The Twelve Prineesses, in their chamber, laughed, and the 
eldest said, " He, tooj might as well have saved his life/' 

With that they got up, opened wardrobes, presses, cup- 
boards, and brought out pretty dresses; dressed themselves be- 
fore the mirrors, sprang about, and rejoiced at the prospeet of 
the dance. 

Only the youngest said, " I know not how it is. You are 
very happy, but I feel strange. Some misfortune is certainly 
about to befall us." 

" You are a goose, who are always frightened," said the 
eldest. " Have you forgotten how many King's Sons have al- 
ready come here in vain? I had hardly any need to give the 
soldier a sleeping-draught. In any ease, the clown would not 
have awakened." 

When they were all ready, the eldest then went to her bed 
and tapped it. 

It immediately sank into the earth; and one after the other 
they descended through the opening, the eldest going first. 

The soldier, who had watched everything, tarried no longer, 
put on his little cloak, and went down last with the youngest. 
Half-way down the steps, he just trod a little on her dress. 

She was terrified at that, and cried out, " What is that? who 
is pulling at my dress? " 

"Don't be so silly!" said the eldest, "you have caught it 
on a nail." 

Then they went all the way down, and when they were at the 

bottom, they were standing in a wonderfully pretty avenue of 

trees, all the leaves of which were of silver, and shone and 

glistened. The soldier thought, " I must carry a token away 


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with me," and broke off a twig from one of them, on which the 
tree cracked with a loud report. 

The youngest cried out again, <c Something is wrong, Hid 
you hear the crack? " 

But the eldest said, " It is a gun fired for joy, because we 
have got rid of our Prince so quickly." 

After that they came into an avenue where all the leaves 
were of gold, and lastly into a third where they were of bright 
diamonds. He broke off a twig from eaqh, which made such a 
crack each time that the youngest started back in terror, but 
the eldest still declared that they were salutes. 

They went on and came to a great lake whereon stood twelve 
little boats, and in every boat sat a handsome Prince, all of 
whom were waiting for the Twelve Princesses. Each took one 
of them with him, but the soldier seated himself by the young- 

Then her Prince said, " I can't tell why the boat is so much 
heavier to-day. I shall have to row with all my strength, if I 
am to get it across." 

" What should cause that," said the youngest, " but the 
warm weather? I feel very warm too." 

On the opposite side of the lake stood a splendid, brightly-lit 
castle, from whence resounded the joyous music of trumpets 
and kettle-drums. They rowed thither, entered, and each 
Prince danced with the maiden he loved, but the soldier danced 
with them unseen. And when one of them had a cup of wine 
in her hand he drank it up, so that the cup was empty when 
she carried it to her mouth. The youngest was alarmed at this, 

but the eldest always made her be silent. 


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They danced there till three o'clock in the morning, when all 
the shoes were danced into holes, and they were forced to leave 
off. The Princes rowed them back again over the lake, and 
this time the soldier seated himself by the eldest. On the shore 
they took leave of their Princes, and promised to return the 
following night. 

When they reached the stairs, the soldier ran on in front 
and lay down in his bed, and when the Twelve Princesses had 
come up slowly and wearily, he was already snoring so loudly 
that they could all hear him, and they said, " So far as he is 
concerned, we are safe." 

They took off their beautiful dresses, laid them away, put 
the worn-out shoes under the bed, and lav down. Next morn- 
ing, the soldier was resolved not to speak, but to watch the 
wonderful goings on, and that night again went with them. 
Then everything was done just as it had been done the first 
time, and they danced until their shoes were worn to 
pieces. But the third time, he took a cup away with him as a 

When the hour had arrived for him to give his answer, he 
took the three twigs and the cup, and went to the King, but 
the Twelve Princesses stood behind the door, and listened for 
what he was going to say. 

When the King put the question, " Where have my Twelve 
Daughters danced their shoes to pieces in the night? " he an- 
swered, " In an underground castle with Twelve Princes," and 
related how it had come to pass, and brought out the tokens. 

The King then summoned his daughters, and asked them if 

the soldier had told the truth, and when they saw that they 


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were betrayed, and that falsehood would be of no avail, they; 
were obliged to confess all. 

Thereupon the King asked which of them he would have for 
his wife? 

He answered, " I am no longer young, so give me the eld- 

Then the wedding was celebrated on the self-same day, and 
the kingdom was promised him after the King's death. But 
the Princes were bewitched for as many days more as they had 
danced nights with the Twelve. 


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THERE was once upon a time, a miller who lived with 
his wife in great contentment. They had money and 
land, and their prosperity increased year by year more 
and more. But ill-luck comes like a thief in the night, as their 
wealth had increased so did it again decrease, year by year. 

At last the miller could hardly call the mill in which he lived 
his own. He was in great distress, and when he lay down after 
his day's work, found no rest, but full of care, tossed about in 
his bed. 

One morning, he rose before daybreak and went out into the 
open air, thinking that perhaps there his heart might become 
lighter. As he was stepping over the mill-dam, the first sun- 
beam was just breaking forth, and he heard a rippling sound 
in the pond. He turned round and perceived a beautiful 
woman, rising slowly out of the water. Her long hair, which 
she was holding off her shoulders with her soft hands, fell 
down on both sides, and covered her white body. 

He saw that she was the Nix of the Mill-pond, and in his 

fright did not know whether he should run away or stay where 

he was. 


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But the Nix made her sweet voice heard, called him by his 
name, and asked him why he was so sad? The miller was at 
first struck dumb, but when he heard her speak so kindly, he 
took heart, and told her how he had formerly lived in wealth 
and happiness, but that now he was so poor that he did not 
know what to do. 

" Be easy," answered the Nix, " I will make you richer and 
happier than you have ever been before, only you must promise 
to give me the young thing which has just been born in your 

" What else can that be," thought the miller, " but a young 
puppy or kitten? " and he promised her what she desired. 

The Nix descended into the water again, and he hurried back 
to his mill, consoled and in good spirits. He had not yet 
reached it, when the maid-servant came out of the house, and 
cried to him to rejoice, for his wife had a little boy. The miller 
stood as if struck by lightning. He saw very well that the 
cunning Nix had been aware of it, and had cheated him. 

Hanging his head, he went up to his wife's bedside and 
when she said, " Why do you not rejoice over the fine boy? " 
he told her what had befallen him, and what kind of a promise 
he had given to the Nix, " Of what use to me are riches and 
prosperity? " he added, " if I am to lose my child; but what 
can I do? " 

Even the relations, who had come thither to wish them joy, 
did not know what to say. In the meantime prosperity again 
returned to the miller's house. All that he undertook suc- 
ceeded; it was as if presses and coffers filled themselves of their 

own accord, and as if money multiplied nightly in the cup- 


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boards. It was not long before his wealth was greater than it 
had ever been before. But he could not rejoice over it un- 
troubled, the bargain which he had made with the Nix tor- 
mented his soul. 

Whenever he passed the mill-pond, he feared she might as- 
cend and remind him of his debt. He never let the boy himself 
go near the water. " Beware," he said to him, " if you do but 
touch the water, a hand will rise, seize you, and draw you 

But as year after year went by, and the Nix did not show 
herself again, the miller began to feel at ease. The boy grew 
up to be a youth and was apprenticed to a huntsman. When 
he had learnt everything, and had become an excellent hunts- 
man, the lord of the village took him into his service. In the 
village lived a beautiful and true-hearted maiden, who pleased 
the huntsman. When his master perceived that, he gave him a 
little house, the two were married, lived peacefully and hap- 
pily, and loved each other with all their hearts. 

One day, the huntsman was chasing a roe. And when the 
animal turned aside from the forest into the open country, he 
pursued it and at last shot it. He did not notice that he was 
now in the neighborhood of the dangerous mill-pond, and went, 
after he had disembowelled the stag, to the water, in order to 
wash his blood-stained hands. 

Scarcely, however, had he dipped them in than the Nix as- 
cended, smilingly wound her dripping arms around him, and 
drew him quickly down under the waves, which closed over 

When it was evening, and the huntsman did not return 


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home, his wife grew alarmed. She went out to seek him, and 
as he had often told her that he had to be on his guard against 
the snares of the Nix, and dared not venture into the neigh- 
borhood of the mill-pond, she already suspected what had hap- 
pened. She hastened to the water, and when she found his 
hunting-pouch lying on the shore, she could no longer have any 
doubt of the misfortune. 

Lamenting her sorrow, and wringing her hands, she called 
on her beloved by name, but in vain. She hurried across to the 
other side of the pond, and called him anew. She reviled the 
Nix with harsh words, but no answer followed. The surface of 
the water remained calm, only the crescent moon stared stead- 
ily back at her. The poor woman did not leave the pond. 
With hasty steps, she paced round and round it, without rest- 
ing a moment, sometimes in silence, sometimes uttering a loud 
cry, sometimes softly sobbing. At last her strength came to an 
end, she sank down to the ground and fell into a heavy 

Presently a dream took possession of her. She was anx- 
iously climbing upward between great masses of rock. Thorns 
and briars caught her feet, the rain beat in her face, and the 
wind tossed her long hair about. When she had reached the 
summit, quite a different sight presented itself to her. The 
sky was blue, the air soft, the ground sloped gently downward, 
and on a green meadow, gay with flowers of every color, stood 
a pretty cottage. She went up to it and opened the door. 
There sat an Old Woman with white hair, who beckoned to her 

At that very moment, the poor woman awoke, day had al- 


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ready 'dawned, and she at once resolved to act in accordance 
with her dream. She laboriously climbed the mountain. 
Everything was exactly as she had seen it in the night. The 
Old Woman received her kindly, and pointed out a chair on 
which she might sit. " You must have met with a misfortune," 
she said, " since you have sought out my lonely cottage," 

With tears, the woman related what had befallen her. 

" Be comforted," said the Old Woman, " I will help you. 
Here is a Golden Comb for you. Tarry till the full moon has 
risen, then go to the mill-pond, seat yourself on the shore, and 
comb your long black hair with this comb. When you have 
done, lay it down on the bank, and you will see what will hap- 

The woman returned home, but the time till the full moon 
came, passed slowly. At last the shining disc appeared in the 
heavens, then she went out to the mill-pond, sat down and 
combed her long black hair with the Golden Comb. When she 
had finished, she laid it down at the water's edge. 

It was not long before there was a movement in the depths, 
a wave rose, rolled to the shore, and bore the comb away with 

In not more than the time necessary for the comb to sink to 
the bottom, the surface of the water parted, and the head 
of the huntsman arose. He did not speak, but looked 
at his wife with sorrowful glances. At the same instant, a 
second wave came rushing up, and covered the man's head. 
All had vanished, the mill-pond lay peaceful as before, and 
nothing but the face of the full moon shone on it. 

Full of sorrow, the woman went back, but again the dream 


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showed her the cottage of the Old Woman. Next morning, 
she again set out and complained of her woes to the Wise 

The Old Woman gave her a Golden Flute, and said, " Tarry 
till the full moon comes again, then take this flute. Play a 
beautiful air on it, and when you have finished, lay it on the 
sand. Then you will see what will happen." 

The wife did as the old woman told her. No sooner was the 
flute lying on the sand, than there was a stirring in the depths, 
and a wave rushed up and bore the flute away with it. 

Immediately afterward the water parted, and not only the 
head of the man, but half of his body also arose. He stretched 
out his arms longingly toward her. But a second wave came 
up, covered him, and drew him down again. 

" Alas, what does it profit me? " said the unhappy woman, 
" that I should see my beloved, only to lose him again! " 

Despair filled her heart anew, but the dream led her a third 
time to the house of the Old Woman. She set out, and the 
Wise Woman gave her a Golden Spinning-Wheel, consoled her 
and said, " All is not yet fulfilled, tarry until the time of the 
full moon. Then take the spinning-wheel, seat yourself on the 
shore, and spin the spool full. When you have done that, place 
the spinning-wheel near the water, and you will see what will 

The woman obeyed all she said exactly. As soon as the full 

moon showed itself, she carried the Golden Spinning-Wheel to 

the shore, and span industriously until the flax came to an end, 

and the spool was quite filled with the threads. No sooner was 

the wheel standing on the shore than there was a more violent 


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movement than before in the depths of the pond, and a mighty 
wave rushed up, and bore the wheel away with it. 

Immediately the head and the whole body of the man rose 
into the air, in a water-spout. He quickly sprang to the shore, 
caught his wife by the hand and fled. 

But they had scarcely gone a very little distance, when the 
whole pond rose with a frightful roar, and streamed out over 
the open country. The fugitives already saw death before 
their eyes, when the woman in her terror implored the help of 
the Old Woman, and in an instant they were transformed, she 
into a Toad, he into a Frog. 

The flood which had overtaken them could not destroy them, 
but it tore them apart and carried them far away. 

When the water had dispersed and they both touehed dry 
land again, they regained their human form, but neither knew 
where the other was. They found themselves among strange 
people, who did not know their native land. High mountains 
and deep valleys lay between them. In order to keep them- 
selves alive, they were both obliged to tend sheep. 

For many long years, they drove their flocks through field 
and forest and were full of sorrow and longing. When spring 
had once more broken forth on the earth, one day they both 
went out with their flocks, and as chance would have it, they 
drew near each other. They met in a valley, but did not rec- 
ognize each other. Yet they rejoiced that they were no longer 
so lonely. Henceforth they every day drove their flocks to the 
same place. They did not speak much, but they felt comforted. 

One evening wfien the full moon was shining in the sky, and 

the sheep were already at rest, the shepherd pulled the flute out 


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of his pocket, and played on it a beautiful but sorrowful air. 
When he had finished, he saw that the shepherdess was weep- 
ing bitterly. 

" Why are you weeping? " he asked. 

" Alas," answered she, " thus shone the full moon when I 
played this air on the flute for the last time, and the head of 
my beloved rose out of the water." 

He looked at her, and it seemed as if a veil fell from his eyes, 
and he recognized his dear wife. And when she looked at him, 
and the moon shone in his face she knew him also. They em- 
braced and kissed each other, and no one need ask if they were 


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A POOR woodcutter lived with his wife and three 
daughters in a little hut on the edge of a lonely wood. 
One morning as he was about to go to his work, he said 
to his wife, " Let my dinner be brought into the wood to me by 
my eldest daughter, or I shall never get my work done. And 
in order that she may not miss her way," he added, " I will take 
a bag of millet with me and strew the seeds on the path." 

When, therefore, the sun was just above the centre of the 
wood, the girl set out on her way with a bowl of soup. But 
the field-sparrows, and wood-sparrows, larks and finches, 
blackbirds and siskins had picked up the millet long before, 
and the girl could not find the track. Then trusting to chance, 
she went on and on, until the sun sank and night began to fall. 
The trees rustled in the darkness, the owls hooted, and she be- 
gan to be afraid. 

Then in the distance she perceived a light which glimmered 

between the trees. " There ought to be some people living 

there, who can take me in for the night," thought she, and went 

up to the light. It was not long before she came to a house 

the windows of which were all lighted up. 


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She knocked, and a rough voice from the inside cried, 
c< Come in." 

The girl stepped into the dark entrance, and knocked at the 
door of the room. " Just come in," cried the voice. 

And when she opened the door, an old gray-haired man was 
sitting at the table, supporting his face with both hands, and 
his white beard fell down over the table almost as far as the 
ground. By the stove lay three animals, a hen, a cock, and a 
brindled cow. 

The girl told her story to the Old Man, and begged for shel- 
ter for the night. The man said: 

"Pretty little Hen, 
Pretty little Cock, 
And pretty brindled Cow, 
What say ye all noiv?" 

" Duks" answered the animals, and that must have meant, 
" We are willing," for the Old Man said, " Here you shall 
have shelter and food. Go to the fire, and cook us our supper." 

The girl found in the kitchen abundance of everything and 
cooked a good supper, but had no thought of the animals. She 
carried the full dishes to the table, seated herself by the gray- 
haired man, ate and satisfied her hunger. 

When she had had enough, she said, " But now I am tired. 
Where is there a bed in which I can lie down, and sleep? " The 
animals replied: 

"Thou hast eaten with him, 
Thou hast drunk with him, 
Thou hast had no thought for us, 
So find out for thyself where thou canst 
pass the night/' 

[ 353 ] - t . 

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Then said the Old Man, " Just go up-stairs, and you will 
find a room with two beds. Shake them up, and put white 
linen on them, and then I, too, will come and lie down to sleep." 

The girl went up, and when she had shaken the beds and 
put clean sheets on, she lay down in one of them without wait- 
ing any longer for the Old Man. 

After some time, however, the gray-haired man came, took 
his candle, looked at the girl and shook his head. When he saw 
that she had fallen into a sound sleep, he opened a trap-door, 
and let her down into the cellar. 

Late at night, the woodcutter came home, and reproached 
his wife for leaving him to hunger all day. " It is not my 
fault," she replied, " the girl went out with your dinner, and 
must have lost herself, but she is sure to come back to-morrow." 

The woodcutter, however, arose before dawn to go into the 
wood, and requested that the second daughter should take him 
his dinner that day. " I will take a bag with lentils," said he; 
" the seeds are larger than millet. The girl will see them bet- 
ter, and can't lose her way." 

At dinner-time, therefore, the girl took out the food, but 
the lentils had disappeared. The birds of the wood had picked 
them up as they had done the day before, and had left none. 

The girl wandered about in the wood until night, and then 

she too reached the house of the Old Man, was told to go in, 

and begged for food and a bed. The man with the white beard 

again asked the animals: 

"Pretty little Hen, 
Pretty little Cock, 
And pretty brindled Cow, 
What say ye all now?" 

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The animals again replied " Duks" And everything hap- 
pened just as it had happened the day before. The girl cooked 
a good meal, ate and drank with the Old Man, and did not 
concern herself about the animals, and when she inquired about 
her bed, they answered: 

"Thou hast eaten with him, 
Thou hast drunk with him, 
Thou hast had no thought for us, 
So find out for thyself where thou canst 
pass the night." 

When she Avas asleep the Old Man came, looked at her, shook 
his head, and let her down into the cellar. 

On the third morning, the woodcutter said to his wife, 
" Send our youngest child out with my dinner to-day, she has 
always been good and obedient, and will stay in the right path, 
and not run about after every wild bumblebee, as her sisters 

The mother did not want to do it, and said, " Am I to lose 
my dearest child, as well? " 

"Have no fear," he replied, "the girl will not go astray; 
she is too prudent and sensible. Besides, I will take some peas 
with me, and strew them about. They are still larger than 
lentils, and will show her the way." 

But when the girl went out with her basket on her arm, the 

wood-pigeons had already got all the peas in their crops, and 

she did not know which way to turn. She was full of sorrow 

and never ceased to think how hungry her father would be, 

and how her good mother would grieve, if she did not return 



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At length, when it grew dark, she saw the light and came 
to the house in the wood. She begged quite prettily to be al- 
lowed to spend the night there. And the man with the white 
beard once more asked his animals: 

"Pretty little lien, 
Pretty little Cock, 
And pretty brindled Cow, 
What say ye all nowf* f 

" DiiJcs" said they. Then the girl went to the stove where the 
animals were lying, and petted the cock and hen, and stroked 
their smooth feathers with her hand, and caressed the brindled 
cow between her horns. 

And when, in obedience to the Old Man's orders, she had 
made ready some good soup, and the bowl was placed upon 
the table, she said, " Am I to eat as much as I want, and the 
good animals to have nothing? Outside is food in plenty, I 
will look after them first." 

So she went and brought some barley and strewed it for the 
cock and hen, and a whole armful of sweet-smelling hay for 
the cow. " I hope you will like it, dear Animals," said she, 
" and you shall have a refreshing draught in case you are 

Then she fetched in a bucketful of water, and the cock and 
hen jumped on to the edge of it and dipped their beaks in. 
Then held up their heads as the birds do when they drink, and 
the brindled eow also took a hearty draught. 

When the animals were fed, the girl seated herself at the 

table by the Old Man, and ate what he had left. It was not 

long before the eock and the hen began to thrust their heads 


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beneath their wings, and the eyes of the cow likewise began 16 
blink. Then said the girl, " Ought Ave not to go to bed? " 

"Preihj little Hen, 
Pretty little Code, 
And pretty brindled Cow, 
What say ye all nowf" 

The animals answered " Duks." 

"Thou hast eaten with us, 
Thou hast drunk xvith us, 
Thou hast had kind thought for 

all of us, 
We wish thee good-night." 

Then the girl went up-stairs, shook the feather-beds, and 
laid clean sheets on them. And when she had done it the Old 
Man came and lay down on one of the beds, and his white 
beard reached down to his feet. The girl lay down on the 
other, said her prayers, and fell asleep. 

She slept quietly till midnight, and then there was such a 
noise in the house that she awoke. There was a sound of crack- 
ing and splitting in every comer. The doors sprang open, and 
beat against the walls. The beams groaned as if they were 
being torn out of their joints. It seemed as if the stairease 
were falling clown. And at length there was a crash as if the 
entire roof had fallen in. 

As, however, all grew quiet once more, and the girl was not 
hurt, she stayed quietly lying where she was, and fell asleep 
again. But when she woke up in the morning with the bril- 
liancy of the sunshine, what did her eyes behold? 


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She was lying in a vast hall, and everything around her 
shone with royal splendor. On the walls, golden flowers grew 
up on a ground of green silk. The bed was of ivory, and the 
canopy of red velvet, and on a chair close by, was a pair of 
shoes embroidered with pearls. 

The girl believed that she was in a dream, but three richly 
clad attendants came in, and asked what orders she would like 
to give? 

" If you will go," she replied, " I will get up at once and 
make ready some soup for the Old Man, and then I will feed 
the pretty little hen, and the cock, and the beautiful brindled 

She thought the Old Man was up already, and looked round 
at his bed. He, however, was not lying in it, but a stranger. 

And while she was looking at him, and becoming aware that 
he was young and handsome, he awoke, sat up in bed, and 
said, " I am a King's Son, and was enchanted by a wicked 
Witch, and made to live in this wood, as an old gray-haired 
man. No one was allowed to be with me but my three at- 
tendants in the form of a coek, a hen, and a brindled cow. The 
spell was not to be broken until a girl came to us, whose heart 
was so good that she showed herself full of love, not only to- 
ward mankind, but toward animals — and that you have done, 
and by you, at midnight, we were set free, and the old house in 
the wood was changed back again into my royal palace." 

And when they had arisen, the King's Son ordered the three 

attendants to set out and fetch the father and mother of the girl 

to the marriage feast. 

" But where are mv two sisters? " inquired the girl. 

[ 358 ] 

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" I have locked them in the cellar, and to-morrow they shall 
he led into the wood, and shall live as servants to a charcoal- 
burner, until they have grown kinder, and do not leave poor 
animals to suffer hunger." 


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THERE was once a King who had a son who asked in 
marriage the daughter of a mighty King, She was 
called Maid Maleen, and was very beautiful. As her 
father wished to give her to another, the Prince was rejected. 

But since they both loved each other with all their hearts, 
they would not give each other up, and Maid Maleen said 
to her father, " I can and will take no other for my hus- 

Then the King flew into a passion, and ordered a dark tower 
to be built, into which no ray of sunlight or moonlight should 
enter. When it was finished, he said, " Therein shall you be 
imprisoned for seven years, and then I will come and see if 
your perverse spirit is broken/* 

Meat and drink for the seven years were carried into the 

tower; and then she and her waiting-woman were led into it 

and walled up, and thus cut off from the sky and from the 

earth. There they sat in the darkness, and knew not when day 

or night began. The King's Son often went round and round 

the tower, and called their names, but no sound from without 

[360 J 

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pierced through the thick walls. What else could they do but 
lament and complain? 

Meanwhile, the time passed, and by the small amount of food 
and drink left they knew that the seven years were coming to 
an end. They thought the moment of their deliverance was 
come. But no stroke of the hammer was heard, no stone fell 
out of the Avail, and it seemed to Maid Maleen that her father 
had forgotten her. As they had food for only a short time 
longer, and saw a miserable death awaiting them, Maid Maleen 
said, " We must try our last chance, and see if we can break 
through the wall." 

She took the bread-knife, and picked and bored at the mor- 
tar of a stone, and when she was tired, the waiting-maid took 
her turn. With great labor they succeeded in getting out one 
stone, then a second, and third. And when three days were 
over, the first ray of light fell on their darkness, and at last 
the opening was so large that they could look out. 

The sky was blue, and a fresh breeze played on their faces; 
but how melancholy everything looked all around! Her fa- 
ther's castle lay in ruins, the town and the villages were, so 
far as could be seen, destroyed by fire, the fields far and wide 
laid to waste, and no human being was visible. 

When the opening in the wall was large enough for them to 
slip through, the waiting-maid sprang down first, and then 
Maid Maleen followed. But where were they to go? The 
enemy had ravaged the whole kingdom, driven away the King, 
and slain all the inhabitants. They wandered forth to seek 
another country, but nowhere did they find a shelter, or a hu- 
man being to give them a mouthful of bread. Their need was 


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so great that they were forced to appease their hunger with 

When, after long journeying, they came into another coun- 
try, they tried to get work everywhere. But wherever they 
knocked they were turned away, and no one would have pity 
on them. 

At last they arrived in a large city and went to the royal 
palace. There also they were ordered to go away, but at last 
the cook said that they might stay in the kitchen and be scul- 

The King's Son in whose kingdom they were, was, however, 
the very man who had been betrothed to Maid Maleen. His 
father had chosen another Bride for him, whose face was as 
ugly as her heart was wicked. The wedding was fixed, and the 
girl had already arrived. Because of her great ugliness, how- 
ever, she shut herself in her room, and allowed no one to see 
her, and Maid Maleen had to take her her meals from the 

When the day came for the Bride and the Bridegroom to go 
to church, she was ashamed of her ugliness, and afraid that if 
she showed herself in the streets, she would be mocked and 
laughed at by the people. Then said she to Maid Maleen, " A 
great piece of luck has befallen you. I have sprained my foot, 
and cannot walk through the streets. You shall put on my 
wedding-clothes and take my place. A greater honor than that 
you cannot have! " 

Maid Maleen, however, refused it, and said, " I wish for no 

honor which is not suitable for me." 

It was in vain, too, that the Bride offered her gold. At last 


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she said angrily, " If you do not obey me, it shall cost you your 
life. I have but to speak the word, and your head will lie at 
your feet/' 

Then she was forced to obey, and put on the Bride's mag- 
nificent clothes and all her jewels. When she entered the 
royal hall, every one was amazed at her great beauty, and the 
King said to his son, " This is the Bride whom 1 have chosen 
for you, and whom you must lead to church." 

The Bridegroom was astonished, and thought, " She is like 
my Maid Maleen, and I should believe that it was she herself, 
but she has long been shut up in the tower or dead." 

He took her by the hand and led her to church. On the 

way was a nettle-plant, and she said: 

"Nettle-plant, Nettle-plant, 
Nettle-plant so small! 
What are you doing here, 
Alone by the wall? 
I have the time known, 
When unroasted, unboiled, 
I ate thee alone!'* 

" What are you saying? " asked the King's Son. 

u Nothing," she replied, " I was only thinking of Maid 

He was surprised that she knew about her, but kept silence. 

When they came to the foot-plank into the churchyard, she 


"Foot-bridge, break not, 
I am not the true Bride/' 

" What are you saying there? " asked the King's Son. 

" Nothing," she replied, " I was only thinking of Maid 



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When they came to the church-door, she said once more: 

"Church-door, break not, 
I am not the true Bride." 

" What are you saying there? " asked he, 

" Ah/' she answered, " I was only thinking of Maid 

Then he took out a precious chain, put it round her neck, 
and fastened the clasp. Thereupon they entered the church, 
and the priest joined their hands together before the altar, and 
married them. He led her home, but she did not speak a 
single word the whole way. 

When they got back to the royal palace, she hurried into the 
Bride's chamber, put off the magnificent clothes and the 
jewels, dressed herself in her gray gown, and kept nothing but 
the jewel on her neck, which she had received from the Bride- 

When the night came, and the Bride was to be led into the 
apartment of the King's Son, she let her veil fall over her face, 
that he might not observe the deception. 

As soon as every one had gone away, he said to her, " What 
did you say to the nettle-plant which was growing by the way- 

" To which nettle-plant? " asked she; " I don't talk to nettle- 

" If you did not do it, then you are not the true Bride," said 

So she bethought herself, and said: 

4< I must go my maid to see, 
Who keeps my secret thoughts for me. n 

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She went out and sought Maid Maleen. " Girl, what have 

you been saying to the nettle? " 

" I said nothing but: 

"Nettle-plant, Nettle-plant, 
Nettle-plant so small! 
What are you doing here. 
Alone by the wall? 
I have the time known, 
When unroasted, unboiled, 
I ate thee aloneV* 

The Bride ran back into the chamber, and said, " I know 
now what I said to the nettle," and she repeated the words 
which she had just heard. 

" But what did you say to the foot-bridge when we went 
over it? " asked the King's Son. 

" To the foot-bridge? " she answered. " I don't talk to foot- 

" Then you are not the true Bride." 

She again said: 

"7 must go my maid to see. 
Who keeps my secret thoughts for me," 

and ran out and found Maid Maleen. " Girl, what did you say 
to the foot-bridge? " 

" I said nothing but: 

"Foot-bridge, break not, 
I am not the true Bride." 

"That costs you your life!" cried the Bride, but she hur- 
ried into the room, and said, " I know now what I said to the 
fool-bridge," and she repeated the words. 
" But what did you say to the chureh-door? " 
" To the chureh-door? " she replied; " I don't talk to church- 


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u THen you are not the true Bride." 

She went out and found Maid Maleen, and said, " Girl, what 

did you say to the church-door? " 

"I said nothing but: 

"Church-door, break not y 
I am not the true Bride." 

" That will break your neck for you! " cried the Bride, and 
flew into a terrible passion, but she hastened back into the 
room, and said, " I know now what I said to the church-door," 
and she repeated the words. 

" But where have you the jewel which I gave you at the 
church-door? " 

" What jewel?" she answered; "you did not give me any 

" I myself put it round your neck, and I myself fastened it. 
If you do not know that, you are not the true Bride." 

He drew the veil from her face, and when he saw her ugli- 
ness, he sprang baek terrified, and said, " How come you here? 
Who are you? " 

" I am your betrothed Bride, but because I feared lest the 
people should mock me when they saw me out of doors, I 
commanded the scullery-maid to dress herself in my elothes, 
and to go to church instead of me." 

"Where is the girl? " said he; " I want to see her, go and 
bring her here." 

She went out and told the servants that the seullery-maid 

was an impostor, and that they must take her out into the 

courtyard and strike off her head. 

The servants laid hold of Maid Maleen and wanted to drag 


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her out, but she screamed so loudly for help, that the King's 
Son heard her voice, hurried out of his chamber and ordered 
them to set the maiden free. 

Lights were brought, and then he saw on her neck the gold 
chain which he had given her at the church-door. 

" You are the true Bride," said he, " who went with me to 
church. Come with me now to my room." 

When they were both alone, he said, " On the way to the 
church you did name Maid Maleen, who was my betrothed 
Bride. If I could believe it possible, I should think she was 
standing before me — you are like her in every respect." 

She answered, " I am Maid Maleen, who for your sake was 
imprisoned seven years in the darkness, who suffered hunger 
and thirst, and has lived so long in want and poverty. To-day, 
however, the sun is shining on me once more. I was married 
to you in the church, and I am your lawful wife." 

Then they kissed each other, and were happy all the days 
of their lives. 

The false Bride was rewarded for what she had done by hav- 
ing her head cut off. 

The tower in which Maid Maleen had been imprisoned re- 
mained standing for a long time, and when the children passed 
by it, they sang: 

"Kling, klang, gloria. 
Who sits within this tower? 
A King's Daughter, she sits within, 
A sight of her I cannot win, 
The wall it will not break, 
The stone cannot be pierced. 
Little Hans, with your coat so gay, 
Follow me, follow me, fast as you may." 

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Digitized by Microsoft ® 

Digitized by Microsoft ® 

Digitized by Microsoft ®